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London Printed mdclxxxviiii 
reprinted, the sixth time, by a. millar, h. 
woodfall, i. whiston and b. white, i. ri- 
vington, l. £>avis and c. reymers, r. bald- 
win, hawes clarke and collinsj w. iohn- 
ston, w. owen, i. richardson, s. crowder, 






Chap. I. The Introduction I 

Chap. II. Of Paternal and Regal Power 5 

Chap. III. Of Adam's Title to Sove- 
reignty by Creation 1 6 

Chap. IV. Of Adam's Title to Sove- 
reignty by Donation Gen.i. 28. , 24 

Chap. V. Of Adam's Title to Sove- 
reignty by the Subjeclion of Eve 49 

Chap. VI. Of Adam's Title to Sove- 
reignty by Fatherhood $j 

Chap. VII. Of Fatherhood and Property 
confidered together as Fountains of So- 
vereignty 85 

Chap. VIII. Of the Conveyance of A- 
dam's fovereign Monarchical Power 93 

Chap. IX. Of Monarchy by Inheritance 
from Adam 97 

Chap. X. Of the Heir to Adam's Mo- 
narchical Power 119 

Chap. XI. Who Heir 122 


Chap. I. The Introduction 193 

Chap. It. Of the State of Nature 195 

Chap. III. Of the State of War 206 

Chap. IV. Of Slavery 212 

Chap. V. Of Property 2i£ 

Chap. VI. Of Paternal Power 238 

Chap. VII. Of Political or Civil Society 261 
Chap. Vill. Of theBeginningof Political 

Societies 279 

Chap. IX. Of the Ends of Political So- 
ciety and Government 305 
Chap. X. Of the Forms of a Common- 
wealth 310 
Chap. XI. Of the Extent of the Legis- 
lative Power 312 
Chap. XII. Of the Legislative, Execu- 
tive, and Federative Power of the 
Common- wealth 324 
Chap. XIII. Of the Subordination of the 

Powers of the Common-wealth 328 

Chap. XIV. Of Prerogative 339 

Chap. XV. Of Paternal, Political, and 

Defpotical Power, confidered together 348 
Chap. XVI. Of Conquefl 353 

Chap. XVJI. Of Ufurpation 372 

Chap. XVIII. Of Tyranny 373 

Chap. XIX. Of the DilTolution ef Go- 
▼ernment 384 


Reader, thou haft here the beginning and 

end of a difcourfe concerning government; \4 

what fate has otherwife difpofed of the 

papers that mould have filled up the 

middle, and were more than all the reft, 

it is not worth while to tell thee. Thefe, 

which remain, I hope are fufficient to efta- 

blifti the throne of our great reftorer, our % 

prefent King William ; to make good his 

title, in the confent of the people^-avhich (J^ 

being the only one of all lawful governments, 

he has more fully and clearly, than any 

prince in Chriftendom ; and to juftify to the 

world the people of England, whofe love of 

their juft and natural rights, with their re- 

folution to preferve them, faved the nation 

when it was on the very brink of flavery and 

ruin. If thefe papers have that evidence, I 

flatter myfelf is to be found in them, there 

will be no great mifs of thofe which are loft, 

and my reader may be fatisfied without them : 

for I imagine, I mall have neither the time, 

nor inclination to repeat my pains, and fill 

up the wanting part of my anfwer, by tracing 

Sir Robert again, through all the windings 

and obfcurities, which are to be met with 

in the feveral branches of his wonderful fy- 

ftem. The king, and body of the nation, 

have fince fo throughly confuted his Hypo- 

thefts, that 1 fuppofe no body hereafter will 

I have 


have cither the confidence to appear againft 
our common fafety, and be again an advocate 
for flavery ; or the weaknefs to be deceived 
with contradictions drefled up in a popular 
flile, and well-turned periods : for if any one 
will be at the pains, himfelf, in thofe parts, 
which are here untouched, to ftrip Sir Ro- 
bert's difcourfes of the flourifh of doubtful 
expreffions, and endeavour to reduce his 
words to direct, pofitive, intelligible propo- 
rtions, and then compare them one with an- 
other, he will quickly be fatisrled, there was 
never fo much glib nonfenfe put together in 
well-founding Englifh. V/If he think it not 
worth while to examine his works all thro', 
let him make an experiment in that part, 
where he treats of ufurpation ; and let him 
try, whether he can, with all his fkill, make 
Sir Robert intelligible, and confident with 
himfelf, or common fenfe. I mould not 
fpeak fo plainly of a gentleman, long fince 
paft anfwering, had not the pulpit, of late 
years, publicly owned his doctrine, and made 
it the current divinity of the times. It is 
neceffary thofe men, who taking on them to 
be teachers, have fo dangeroufly milled others, 
mould be openly (hewed of what authority 
this their Patriarch is, whom they have fo 
blindly followed, that fo they may either 
retract what upon fo ill grounds they have 
vented, and cannot be maintained ; or elfe 
juftify thofe principles which they preached 
up for gofpel -, though they had no better an 


author than an English eourtier : for I fhould 
not have writ againfr. Sir Robert, or taken the 
pains to mew his miftakes, inconfiftencies, 
and want of (what he fo much boafts of, and 
pretends wholly to build on) fcripture-proofs, 
were there not men amongft us, who, by 
crying up his books, 4 and efpoufing his doc- 
trine, fave me from the reproach of writing 
againfr. a dead adverfary. They have been fo 
zealous in this point, that, if I have done 
him any wrong, I cannot hope they fhould 
fpare me, I wifh, where they have done the 
truth and the public wrong, they would be as 
ready to redrefs it, and allow its juft weight to 
this reflection, viz. that there cannot be done 
a greater mifchief to prince and people, than 
the propagating wrong notions concerning 
government; that fo at laft all times might 
not have reafon to complain of the Drum 
Ecclefiaftic. If any one, concerned really for 
truth, undertake the confutation of my Hy- 
pothecs, I promife him either to recant my 
miflake, upon fair conviction ; or to anfwer 
his difficulties. But he muft remember two 

Firft, That cavilling here and there, at 
fome exprerlion, or little incident of my dif- 
courfe, is not an anfwer to my book. 

Secondly, That I ihall not take railing for 
arguments, nor think either of thefe worth 
my notice, though I fhall always look on 
myfelf as bound to give fatisfacton to any 
pne, who mall appear to be confcientioufly 


fcrupulous in the point, and mall mew any 
juft ground for his fcruples. 

I have nothing more, but to advertife the 
reader, that Oblervations (lands for Obferva- 
tions on Hobbs, Milton, &c. and that a bare 
quotation of pages always means pages of his 
Patriarchal Edition 1680. —k $JL*>* 



Chap. I. §. i . Slavery is fo vile and miferable 
an eftate of man, and fo directly oppofite to 
the generous temper and courage of our na- 
tion ; that it is hardly to be conceived, that 
an Englt/hman, much lefs a gentleman, mould ji/j/^ 
plead for it. And truly I mould have takeiyy '* 
Sir Robert Fi/mers Patriarcba> as any other fal& 
treatife, which would perfuade all men, that/ 
they are flaves, and ought to be fo, for fucfr. 
another exercife of wit, as was his who writ 
the encomium of Nero ; rather than for a 
ferious difcourfe meant in.earneft, had not the 
gravity of the title and epiftle, the picture in 
the front of the book, and the applaufe that 
followed it, required me to believe, that the 

B author 


2 Of Government. 

author and publisher were both in earned. 

I therefore took it into my hands with all the 

expectation, and read it through with all the 

attention due to a treatife that made fuch a 

noife at its coming abroad, and cannot but 

confefs my felf mightily furprifed/f that in a 

book, which was to provide chains for all 

mankind, I mould find nothing but a rope 

of fand, ufeful perhaps to fuch, whofe fkill 

and bullnefs it is to raife a duft, and would 

blind the people, the better to miflead them ;*) 

but in truth not of any force to draw thofe 

into bondage, who have their eyes open, and 

fo much fenfe about them, as to confider, 

that chains are but an ill wearing, how much 

care foever hath been taken to file and polifli 


§. 2. If any one think I take too much 
liberty in fpeaking fo freely of a man, who 
is the great champion of abfolute power, and 
the idol of thofe who worfhip it ; I befeech 
him to make this fmall allowance for once, 
to one, who, even after the reading of Sir 
Robert's book, cannot but think himfelf, as 
the laws allow him, a freeman: and I know 
no fault it is to do fo, unlefs any one better 
billed in the fate of it, than I, mould have it 
revealed to him, that this treatife, which has 
lain dormant fo long, was, when it appeared 
in the world, to carry, by ftrength of its 
arguments, all liberty out of it ^ and that 


Op Government. 3 

from thenceforth our author's fhort model- 
was to be the pattern in the mount, and the 
perfect flandard of politics for the future. 
His fyftem lies in a little compafs, it is no 
more but this, 

Tbat all government is abfolute monarchy. 

And the ground he builds on, is this, 

"That no man is born free. 

§.3. In this lad age a generation of men 
has fprung up amongft us, that would flatter 
princes with an opinion, that they have a 
divine right to abfolute power, let the laws 
by which they are conftituted, and are to 
govern, and the conditions under which they 
enter upon their authority, be what they will, 
and their engagements to obferve them never 
fo well ratified by folemn oaths and promifes. 
To make way for this doctrine, they have 
denied mankind a right to natural freedom ; 
whereby they have not only, as much as in 
them lies, expofed all fubjects to the utmoft 
mifery of tyranny and opprefTion, but have 
alfo unfettled the titles, and fhaken the thrones 
of princes : (for they too, by thefe mens 
fyftem, except only one, are all born flaves, 
and by divine right are fa bj efts to Adam's 
right heir j) as if they had deHgned to make 
war upon all government, and fubvert the 
very foundations of human fbciety, to ferve 
their prefent turn. 

§. 4. However we muft believe them upon 
their own bare words, when they tell us, we 

B 2 are 

4 Of Government. 

are all born Haves, and we mud continue Co, 
there is no remedy for it -, life and thraldom 
we enter'd into together, and can never be 
quit of the one, till we part with the other. 
Scripture or reafon I am fure do not any where 
fay fo, notwithstanding .the noife of divine 
right, as if divine authority hath fubjected 
us to the unlimited will of another. An 
admirable ftate of mankind, and that which 
they have not had wit enough to find out till 
this latter age. For, however Sir Robert 
Filmer feems to condemn the novelty of the 
contrary opinion, Patr. p. 3. yet I believe it 
will be hard for him to find any other age, 
or country of the world, but this, which has 
afferted monarchy to be jure divino. And 
he confeffes, Patr. p. 4. That Heyward, 
Blackwood, Barclay, and others, that have 
bravely vindicated the right of kings in mojl 
points, never thought of this, but with one 
confent admitted the natural liberty and equality 
of mankind. 

§. 5. By whom this doctrine came at firfc 
tobe broached, and brought in fafhion amongft 
us, and what fad effects it gave rife to, I leave 
to hiftorians to relate, or to the memory of 
thofe, who were contemporaries with Sib- 
thorp and Manwering, to recoiled:. My 
bufinefs at prefent is only to confider what Sir 
Robert Filmer, who is allowed to have carried 
this argument farthefl, and is fuppofed to 
have brought it to perfection, has faid in it; 


Of Government. 5 

for from him every one, who would be as 
fafhionable as French was at court, has 
learned, and runs away with this moit fyftem 
of politics, viz. Men are not born free, a?id 
therefore could never have the liberty to choofe 
either governors, or forms of government. 
Princes have their power abfolute, and by 
divine right -, for flaves could never have a 
right to compact or confent. Adam was an 
abfolute monarch, and fo are all princes 
ever lince. 


Of Paternal and Regal Power. 

§. 6. QIR Robert Filmers great pofition is, 
O that men are not naturally free. This 
is the foundation on which his abfolute mo- 
narchy {lands, and from which it erects itfelf 
to an height, that its power is above every 
power, caput inter nubila, fo high above all 
earthly and human things, that thought can 
fcarce reach it; that promifes and oaths, 
which tye the infinite Deity, cannot confine 
it. But if this foundation fails, all his fabric 
falls with it, and governments muft be left 
again to the old way of being made by con- 
trivance, and the confent of men ^Avz-pwirlvn 
xriais) making ufe of their reafon to unite 
together into fociety. To prove this grand 
pofition of his, he tells us, p. 12. Men 
B 3 are 

c Or Government. 

are born in fubjeBion to ikeir parents, and 
therefore cannot be free. And this autho- 
rity of parents, he calls royal authority, p. 
12, 14. Fatherly authority, right of father- 
hood, p. 12, 20. One would have thought 
he would, in the beginning of fuch a work 
as this, on which was to depend the autho- 
rity of princes, and the obedience of fub- 
jedts, have told us exprefly, what that fa- 
therly authority is, have defined it, though 
not limited it, becaufe in fome other treatiles 
of his he tells us, it is unlimited, and * un- 
limitable ; he mould at leaft have given us 
fuch an account of it, that we might have 
had an entire notion of this fatherhood, or 
fatherly authority, whenever it came in our 
way in his writings : this I expected to have 
found in the firft chapter of his Patriarcha. 
But inflead thereof, having, 1. en paffant, 
made his obeyfance to the arcana imperii, 
p. 5. 2. made his compliment to the rights 
and liberties of this, or any other nation, 
p. 6. which he is going prefently to null and 
deftroy ; and, 3. made his leg to thofe learned 
men, who did not fee fo far into the matter 
as himfelf, p. 7. he comes to fall on Bel- 


* In grants and gifts that have their original from God 
or nature, as the power of the father hath, no inferior power 
of man can limit, nor make any law of prefcription againft 
:hem. Qbferwaticns, 158. 

The fcripture teaches, that fupreme power was originally 
the father, without any limitation, Ohftr^atiin:^ 215 

Of Government. 7 

larmine, p. 8. and, by a victory over him, 
eftablifhes his fatherly authority beyond any 
queftion. Bellarmine being routed by his 
own confeffion, p. 1 1 . the day is clear got, 
and there is no more need of any forces : for 
having done that, I obferve not that he Hates 
the queftion, or rallies up any arguments to 
make good his opinion, but rather tells us 
the ftory, as he thinks fit, of this ftrange 
kind of domineering phantom, called the 
fatherhood^ which whoever could catch, 
prefently got empire, and unlimited abfolute 
power. He allures us how this fatherhood 
began in Adam, continued its courfe, and 
kept the world in order all the time of the 
patriarchs till the flood, got out of the ark 
with Noah and his fons, made and fupported 
all the kings of the earth till the captivity of 
the Ifraelites in Egypt, and then the poor 
fatherhood was under hatches, till God, by 
giving the Ifraelites kings, re-efiablifloed the 
ancient and prime right of the lineal fuccejjion 
in pate?'nal government. This is his bulinefs 
from p. 12. to 19. And then obviating an 
objection, and clearing a difficulty or two 
with one half reafon, p. 23. to confirm the 
natural right of regal power, he ends the 
firfr. chapter. I hope it is no injury to call an 
half quotation an half reafon ; for God fays, 
Honour thy father and mother ; but our author 
contents himfelf with half, leaves out thy 
B 4 mother 

8 Of Government. 

mother quite, as little ferviceable to his pur- 
pofe. But of that more in another place. 

§. 7. I do not think our author fo little 
fkilled in the way of writing difcourfes of this 
nature, nor fo carelefs of the point in hand, 
that he by over-light commits the fault, that 
he himfelf, in his Anarchy of a mixed Mo- 
narchy, p. 239. objects to Mr. Hunt on in thefe 
words : Where firjl 1 charge the author, that 
he hath not given us any definition, or defcription 
of monarchy in general ; for by the rules of me- 
thod he fiould have firfl defined. And by the 
like rule of method Sir Robert mould have told 
us, what his fatherhood or fatherly authority 
is, before he had told us, in whom it was to 
be found, and talked fo much of it. But per- 
haps Sir Robert found, that this fatherly au- 
thority, this power of fathers, and of kings, for 
he makes them both the fame, p. 24. would 
make a very odd and frightful figure, and 
very difagreeing with what either children 
imagine of their parents, or fubjects of their 
kings, if he fhould have given us the whole 
draught together in that gigantic form, he 
had painted it in his own fancy; and there- 
fore, like a wary phyiician, when he would 
have his patient fwallow fome harm or cor- 
rcfive liquor, he mingles it with a large quan- 
tity of that which may dilute it; that the 
fcattered parts may go down with lefs feeling, 
?.nd caufe lefs averfion. 


Of Government. 9 

§. 8, Let us then endeavour to find what 
account he gives us of this fatherly autho- 
rity, as it lies fcattered in the feveral parts of 
his writings. And firft, as it was vefted in 
Adam, he lays, Not only Adam, but the fuc- 
. ceeding patriarchs, had, by right of father- 
hood, royal authority over their children, p. 12. 
'This lordflnp which Adam by command had over 
the iv hole world, and by right defending from 
kirn the patriarchs did enjoy, was as large and 
ample as the abfolute dominion of any monarch, 
which hath been fince the creation , p. 13. Do- 
minion of life and death, making war, and con- 
cluding peace, p. 13. Adam and the patriarchs 
had abfolute power of life and death, p. 35. 
Kings, in the right of parents, fucceed to the 
exercife of fupreme jurifdiclion, p. 19. As 
kingly power is by the law of God, fo it hath 
7io inferior law to limit it ; Adam was lord of 
all, p. 40. The father of a family governs 
by no other law, than by his own will, p. 78. 
The fuperiority of princes is above laws, p. 79. 
The unlimited jurifdicTion of kings is fo amply 
defer i bed by Samuel, p. 80. Kings are above 
the laws, p. 93. And to this purpofe fee a 
great deal more which. our author delivers in 
Bo dins, words : // is certain, that all laws, 
privileges, and grants of princes, have no force, 
but during their life ; if they be not ratified 
by the expref confent, or by fufferance of the 
prince following, efpecially privileges, Obser- 
vations, p, 279. The reafon why laws have 
4 been 

io Of Government. 

been alfo made by kings, was this ; when ki?igs 
were either bujied with wars, or diflraclcd with 
fublic cares, fo that every private man could 
not have accefs to their pcrfons, to learn their 
wills and pleafure, then were laws tf necejfity 
invented, that Jo every particular fubjeel might 
find his prince s pleafure decyphered unto him in 
the tables of his laws, p. 92. In a monarchy, 
the king mujl by necejfity be above the laws, 
p. 100. A perfeel kingdom is that, wherein 
the king rides all things according to his own 
will, p. 100. Neither common nor flat ute laws 
are, or can be, any diminution of that general 
power, which kings have over their people by 
right of fatherhood, p. 115. Adam whs the 
father, king, and lord over his family j a fon, 
a fubjeel, and a fervant or Jlave, were one 
and the fame thing at firfl.' The father had 
power to difpofe or fell his children or fervants -, 
whence we find, that the firfl reckoning up of 
goods in fcripture, the man fervant and the 
maid-fervant, are numbred among the pojfefi 
/ions and fubflance of the owner, as other goods 
were, Obfervations, Pref. God alfo hath given 
to the father a right or liberty, to alien his 
power over his children to any other-, whence 
we find the fale and gift of children to have 
much bee?i in ufe in the beginning of the world, 
when men had their fervants for a pofefjion 
and an inheritance, as well as other goods; 
whereupon we find the power of cajlrating and 
making eunuchs much in ufe in old times, Obn 


Of Government. ii 

fervations, p. 155. Law is nothing elfe but 
the will of him that hath the power of the 
fupreme father, Obfervations, p. 223. It was 
God's ordinance that the fupremacy fhould be 
unlimited in Adam, and as large as all the 
ac~ls of his will; and as in him fo in all others 
that have fupreme power , Obfervations, p. 

§.9.1 have been fain to trouble my reader 
with thefe feveral quotations in our author's 
own words, that in them might be feen his 
own defcription of his fatherly authority, as 
it lies fcattered up and down in his writings, 
which he fuppofes was firft vefted in Adam, 
and by right belongs to all princes ever fince. 
This fatherly authority then, or right of 
fatherhood, in our author's fenfe, is a divine 
unalterable right of fovereignty, whereby a 
father or a prince hath an abfolute, arbitrary, 
unlimited, and unlimi^able power over the 
Jives, liberties, and eftates of his children and 
fubjecls; fo that he may take or alienate their 
eftates, fell, caftrate, or ufe their perfons as 
he pleafes, they being all his Haves, and he 
lord or proprietor of every thing, and his 
unbounded will their law. 

§. io. Our author having placed fuch a 
mighty power in Adam y and upon that fup- 
pofition founded all government, and all power 
of princes, it is reaibnable to expect, that he 
fhould have proved this with arguments clear 
and evident, fuitable to the weightinefs of 
1 the 


12 Of Government. 

the caufe -, that fince men had nothing cKe 
left them, they might in flavery have fuch 
undeniable proofs of its neceffity, that their 
confciences might be convinced, and oblige 
them to iubmit peaceably to that abfolute 
dominion, which their governors had a right 
to exercife over them. Without this, what 
good could our author do, or pretend to do, by 
creeling fuch an unlimited power, but flatter 
the natural vanity and ambition of men, too 
?.pt of itfelf to grow and encreafe with the 
porTerlion of any power ? and by perfuading 
thofe, who, bv the confent of their fellow- 
men, are advanced to great, but limited, 
degrees of it, that by that part which is 
given them, they have a right to all, that 
was not fo ; and therefore may do what they 
pleafe, becaufe they have authority to do 
more than others, and fo tempt them to do 
what is neither for their own, nor the good 
of thofe under their care ; whereby great 
mifchiefs cannot but follow. 

§. 1 1. The fovereigntv of j$ifam, being that 
on which, as a fure baric-, olir author builds 
his mighty abfolute monarchy, I expecled, 
that in his Patriarcha^ this his main fuppo- 
iition would have been Droved, and eflablifhed 
with all that evidence of arguments, that fuch 
a fundamental tenet required ; and that this, 
on which the great itrefs of the bufinefs 
depends, would have been made out with 
rcaibns lufmient to juftify the confidence 


Of Government. 13 

with which it was affumed. Bat in all that 
treatife, I could find very little tending that 
way ; the thing is there fo taken for granted, 
without proof, that I could fcarce believe my- 
felf, when, upon attentive reading that trea- 
tife, I found there fo' mighty a ftructure 
raifed upon the bare fuppofition of this 
foundation : for it is fcarce credible, that 
in a difcouife, where he pretends to confute 
the erroneous principle of man's natural 
freedom, he mould do it by a bare fuppo- 
fition of Adams authority, without offering 
any proof for that authority. Indeed he 
confidently fays, that Adam had royal au- 
thority, p. 12, and 13. Abfolute lordfiip and 
dominion of life and death, p. 13. An uni- 
verfal monarchy, p. 33. Abfolute power of 
life and death, p. 35. He is very frequent- 
in fuch affertions 5 but, what is flrange, in 
all his whole Patriarcha I find not one pre- 
tence of a reafon to eflablifh this his great 
foundation of government; not any thing 
that looks like an argument, but thefe words: 
To cojifirm this natural right of regal power, 
we find in the Decalogue, that the law which 
enjoyns obedience to kings, is delivered in the 
terms, Honour thy father, as if all power were 
originally in the father. And why may I not 
add as well, that in the Decalogue, the law 
that enjoyns obedience to queens, is delivered 
in the terms of Honour thy mother, as if all 
power were originally in the mother ? The 


14 © 1 Government. 

argument, as Sir Robert puts it, will hold as 
well for one as the other : but of this, more 
in its due place. 

§. 12. All that I take notice of here, is, 
that this is all our author fays in this firft, or 
any of the following chapters, to prove the 
abfolute power of Adam, which is his great 
principle : and yet, as if he had there fettled 
it upon fure demonftration, he begins his 
fecond chapter with thefe words, By con- 
f erring thefe proofs and reafons, drawn from 
the authority of the fcripture. Where thofe 
proofs and reafons for Adams fovereignty are, 
bating that of Honour thy father, above men- 
tioned, I confefs, I cannot find -, unlefs what 
he fays, p. 1 1 . In thefe words we have an 
evident confejjton, viz. o/Bellarmine, that crea- 
tion made man prince of his pojlerity, muft be 
taken for proofs and reafons drawn from 
fcripture, or for any fort of proof at all : 
though from thence by a new way of in- 
ference, in the words immediately following, 
he concludes, the royal authority of Adam 
fufficiently fettled in him. 

§. 13. If he has in that chapter, or any 
where in the whole treatife, given any other 
proofs of Adam's royal authority, other than 
by often repeating it, which, among fome 
men, goes for argument, I defire any body 
for him to fhew me the place and page, that 
I may be convinced of my miftake, and ac- 
knowledge my overfight. If no fuch argu- 

Of Government. 15 

ments are to be found, I befeech thofe men, 
who have fo much cried up this book, to 
confider, whether they do not give the world 
caufe to fufpect, that it is not the force of 
reafon and argument, that makes them for 
abfolute monarchy, but fome other by in- 
tereft, and therefore are refoived to applaud 
any author, that writes in favour of this doc- 
trine, whether he fupport it with reafon or no. 
But I hope they do not expect, that rational 
and indifferent men fhouid be brought over to 


their opinion, becaufe this their great doctor 
of it, in a difcourfe made on purpofe, to fet 
up the abfolute monarchical power of Adam, 
in oppofition to the natural freedom of man- 
kind, has faid fo little to prove it, from whence 
it is rather naturally to be concluded, that 
there is little to be faid. 

§. 14. But that I might omit no care to 
inform myfelf in our author's full {&n{e, I 
confulted his Obfervations on Arijiotle, Hobbes, 
&c. to fee whether in difputing with others 
he made ufe of any arguments for this his 
darling tenet of Adam's fovcreignty ; fince in 
his treatife of the Natural Power of Kings, he 
hath been fo fparing of them. In his Obfer- 
vations on Mr. Hobbes 's Leviathan, 1 think he 
has put, in fhort, all thofe arguments for it 
together, which in his writings I find him 
any where to make ufe of: his words are 
thefe : If God created only Adam, and of a 
piece of him made the woman, and if by gene- t 


1 6 Of Govern ;,i e n t. 

ration from them two, as parts of them, all 
mankind be propagated : if alfo God gave to 
Adam not only the dominion over the woman 
and the children that Jhoidd ifue from them, 
but alfo over all the earth to fubdue it, and 
over all the creatures on it, Jo that as long 
as Adam lived, no man could claim or enjoy 
any thing but by donation, afjignation or per- 
inijjion from him, I wonder, 6cc. Obfervations, 
165. Here we have the fum of all his 
arguments, for Adam s fiver cignty* and againft 
natural freedom, which I find up and down 
in his other treatifes : and they are thefe fol- 
lowing ; God's creation of Adam, the dominion 
he gave him over Eve, and the dominion he 
had as father over his children : all which I 
fhall particularly confider. 

C H A P. III. 

Of Adam'* Title to Sovereignty by Creation. 

§• I 5- Q * R Robert, in his preface to his 
O Obfervations on Arijlotles politics, 
tells us, A natural freedom of mankind cannot 
be fuppofed without the denial of the creation of 
Adam: but how Adams being created, which 
v/as nothing but his receiving a being im- 
mediately from omnipotence and the hand 
of God, gave A.dam a fovereignty over any 
thing, I cannot fee, nor confequently under- 
fland, how a fuppofition of natural freedom is 

Of Government. 17 

a denial of Adam\f creation, and would be 
glad any body elfe (fince our author did not 
vouchfafe us the favour) would make it out 
for him : for I find no difficulty to fuppofe 
the freedom of mankind, though I have always 
believed the creation of Adam. He was 
created, or began to exift, by God's imme- 
diate power, without the intervention of 
parents or the pre-exiitence of any of the 
fame fpecies to beget him, when it pleafed 
God he mould ; and fo did the lion, the 
king of hearts, before him, by the fame 
creating power of God : and if bare existence 
by that power, and in that way, will give 
dominion, without any more ado, our author, 
by this argument, will make the lion have 
as good a title to it, as he, and certainly the 
antienter. No ! for Adam had his title by 
the appointment of God, fays our author in 
another place. Then bare creation gave him 
not dominion, and one might have fuppofed 
mankind free without the denying the creation 
of Adam, fince it was God's appointment made 
him monarch. 

§. 16. But let us fee, how he puts his 
creation and this appointment together. By 
the appointment of God, fays Sir Robert, as foon 
as Adam was created, he was monarch of the 
world, though he had, ?to fubjecls -, for though 
there could not be actual government till there 
were fubjeBs, yet by the right of nature it was 
due to Adam to be governor of his poflerity: 

C though 

i8 Of Government. 

though not in aB, yet at leajl in habit, Adam 
was a king from bis creation. I wilh he had 
told us here, what he meant by God's ap- 
f ointment : for whatfoever providence orders, 
or the law of nature directs, or pofitive re- 
velation declares, may be faid to be by God's 
appointment : but Ifuppofe it cannot be meant 
here in the firfl fenfe, /. e. by providence ; 
becaufe that would be to fay no more, but 
that as foon as Adam was created he was de 
faclo monarch, becaufe by right of nature it 
was due to Adam, to be governor of his po- 
Jlerity. But he could not de facia be by 
providence conftituted the governor of the 
world, at a time when there was actually no 
government, no fubjects to be governed, 
which our author here confefTes. Monarch 
of the world is alfo differently ufed by our 
author ; for fometimes he means by it a 
proprietor of all the world exclufive of the 
reft of mankind, and thus he does in the 
fame page of his preface before cited : Adam, 
fays he, being commanded to multiply and people 
the earth, a?id to fubdue it, and having dominion 
given him over all creatures, was thereby the 
monarch of the whole world-, none of his pojlerity 
had any right to pojjefs any thing but by his 
grant or permijjion, or by fuccejfion from him. 
2. Let us underftand then by monarch pro- 
prietor of the world, and by appointment God's 
actual donation, and revealed poiitive grant 
made to Adam, i. Gen. 28. as we fee Sir 


Of Government. 19 

Robert himfelf does in this parallel place, 
and then his argument will ftand thus, by 
the pofitive grant of God: as foon as Adam 
was created, he was proprietor of the world* 
becaufe by the right of nature it was due to 
Adam to be governor of his poflerity. In which 
way of arguing there are two manifefl falfe- 
hoods. Firft, It is falfe, that God made that 
grant to Adam, as foon as he was created, fince, 
tho' it flands in the text immediately after his 
creation, yet it is plain it could not be fpoken 
to Adam, till after Eve was made and brought 
to him : and how then could he be monarch 
by appointment as foon as created, efpecially 
fince he calls, if I miftake not, that which 
God fays to Eve, iii. Gen. 16, the original 
grant of government, which not being till 
after the fall, when Adam was fomewhat, 
at leaft in time, and very much diftant in 
condition, from his creation, I cannot fee, 
how our author can fay in this fenfe, that 
by Gods appointment, as foon as Adam was 
created, he was monarch of the world. Se- 
condly, were it true that God's actual do- 
nation appointed Adam monarch of the world 
as foon as he was created, yet the reafon here 
given for it would not prove it; but it would 
always be a falfe inference, that God, by a 
pofitive donation, appointed Adam monarch of 
the world, becaufe by right of nature it was 
due to Adam to be governor of his pojlerity : 
for having given him the right of government 
by nature, there was no need of a pofitive 
C % docation ; 

2o Of Government. 

donation j at lead it will never be a proof of 
fuch a donation. 

§.17. On the other fide the matter will 
not be much mended, if we underftand by 
God's appointment the law of nature, (though 
it be a pretty harfh expreffion for it in this 
place) and by monarch of the world, fovereign 
ruler of mankind : for then the fentence 
under confederation muft run thus : By the 
law of nature, as foon as Adam was created 
he was governor of mankind, for by right of 
nature it was due to Adam to be governor of 
his po/ierity ; which amounts to this, he was 
governor by right of nature, becaufe he was 
governor by right of nature : but fuppofing 
we mould grant, that a man is by nature 
governor of his children, Adam could not 
hereby be monarch as foon as created: for this 
right of nature being founded in his being 
their father, how Adam could have a natural 
right to be governor, before he was a father, 
when by being a father only he had that right, 
is, methinks, hard to conceive, unlefs he will 
have him to be a father before he was a fa- 
ther, and to have a title before he had it. 

§. 18. To this forefeen objection, our 
author anfwers very logically, he was governor 
in habit, and not in ab~i: a very pretty way 
of being a governor without government, a 
father without children, and a king without 
fubjefts. And thu^s Sir Robert was an author 
before he writ his book ; not in acl it is true, 
but in habit ; for when be had once published 


Of Government. 21 

it, it was due to him by the right of nature, 
to be an author, as much as it was to Adam 
to be governor of his children, when he had 
begot them : and if to be fuch a monarch of 
the world, an abfolute monarch in habit, but 
not in ac~i, will ferve the turn, I mould not 
much envy it to any of Sir Robert's friends, 
that he thought fit gracioufly to beflow it 
upon, though even this of ac~l and habit, if it 
iignified any thing but our author's fkill in 
diftinctions, be not to his purpofe in this 
place. For the queftion is not here about 
Adams actual exercife of government, but 
actually having a title to be governor. Go- 
vernment, fays our author, was due to Adam 
by the right of nature : what is this right of 
nature ? A right fathers have over their chil- 
dren by begetting them; generatione jus acqui- 
ritur parentibus in liberos, fays our author out 
oiGrotius, Obfervations, 223. The right then 
follows the begetting as arifing from it ; fo 
that, according to this way of reafoning or 
diftinguiming of our author, Adam, as foon as 
he was created, had a title only in habit, a?id 
not in act, which in plain Englijh is, he had 
actually no title at all. 

§.19. To fpeak lefs learnedly, and more 
intelligibly, one may fay of Adam, he was 
in a poffibility of being governor, fince it was 
poffible he might beget children, and thereby 
acquire that right of nature, be it what it 
will, to govern them, that accrues from 
C 3 thence ; 

22 Of Government. 

thence : but what connection has this with 
Adams creation, to make him fay, that as 
foon as he was created, he was monarch of the 
world? for it may be as well faid of Noah, 
that as foon as he was born, he was monarch 
of the world, fince he was in pofhbility 
(which in our author's fenfe is enough to 
make a monarch, a monarch in habit y J to out- 
live all mankind, but his own pofterity. 
What fuch neceffary connection there is be- 
twixt Adams creation and his right to govern- 
ment, fo that a natural freedom of mankind 
cannot be fuppofed without the denial of the 
creation of Adam, I confefs for my part I 
do not fee; nor how thofe words, by" the 
appointment, &c. Obfervations, 254. how ever 
explained, can be put together, to make any 
tolerable fenfe, at leaft to eftabliih this po- 
rtion, with which they end, viz. Adam was 
a king from his creation > a king, fays our 
author, not in atf, but in habit, i. e. actually 
no king at all, 

§. 20. 1 fear I have tired my reader's pa- 
tience, by dwelling longer on this paffage, 
than the weightinefs of any argument in it 
feems to require : but I have unavoidably 
been engaged in it by our author's way of 
writing, who, hudling feveral fuppofitions 
together, and that in doubtful and general 
terms, makes fuch a rnedly and confufion, 
that it is impoflible to fhew his miftakes, 
without examining the feveral fenfes wherein 


Of Government. 23 

his words may be taken, and without feein 
how, in any of thefe various meanings, they 
will confifl together, and have any truth in 
them : for in this prefent parTage before us, 
how can any one argue againfl this pofition 
of his, that Adam was a king from his crea- 
tion, unlefs one examine, whether the words, 
from his creation, be to be taken, as th^ 
may, for the time of the commencement of 
his government, as the foregoing words im- 
port, asfoon as be was created he wai monarch ; 
or, for the caufe of it, as he fays, p. 11. 
creation made man prince of his pojlerity ? how 
farther can one judge of the truth of his 
being thus king, till one has examined 
whether king be to be taken, as the words 
in the beginning of this parTage would per- 
fuade, on fuppofition of his private domi- 
nion, which was, by God's politive grant, 
monarch of the world by appointment ; or king 
on fuppofition of his fatherly power over his 
ofF-fpring, which was by nature, due by the 
right of nature-, whether, I fay, king be to 
be taken in both, or one only of thefe two 
fenfes, or in neither of them, but only this, 
that creation made him prince, in a way 
different from both the other ? For though 
this arTertion, that Ada?n was king from lm 
creation, be true in no fenfe, yet it flands 
here as an evident conclufion drawn from the 
preceding words, though in truth it be but 
a bare affertion joined to other affertions of 
the fame kind, which confidently put to- 
C 4 gether 

24 Of Government. 

gether in words of undetermined and du- 
bious meaning, look like a fort of arguing, 
when there is indeed neither proof nor con- 
nection : a way very familiar with our author: 
of which having given the reader a tafte here, 
I fhall, as much as the argument will permit 
me, avoid touching on hereafter ; and mould 
not have d n ne it here, were it not to let the 
world fee, how incoherences in matter, and 
fuppofitions without proofs put handfomely 
together in good words and a plaufible ftile, 
are apt to pafs for ftrong reafon and good 
fenfe, till they come to be looked into with 


Of Adams Title to Sovereignty by Donation^ 
Gen. i. 28. 

§. 21.T TAV1NG at lail got frhrougk 
the foregoing paiTage, where we 
have been lb long detained, not by the force 
of arguments and oppofition, but the in- 
tricacy of the words, and the doubtfulnefs 
of the meaning ; let us go on to his next 
argument, for Adams fovereignty. Our au- 
thor tells us in the words of Mr. Selden, that 
Adam by donation from God, Gen. i. 28. was 
made the general lord of all things, not without 
fuch a private dominion to himjelf as without 
.his grant did exclude his children. This deter- 
mination of Mr. Selden, fays our author, is 
3 confonant 

Of Government. g j 

confonant to the hijiory of the Bible, and na~ 
tural reafon, Obfervations, 2 it). And in his 
Pref. to his Obfervations on Arijktle, he 
fays thus, The jirfi government in the world 
was monarchical in the father ofallfejh, Adam 
being commanded to multiply and people the earth, 
and to fubdue it, and having dominion given 
him over all creatures, was' thereby the monarch 
of the whole world ': none of his pojlerity had 
dny right to poffefs any thing, but by his grant 
or permijjion, or by fuccefjion from him : The 
earth, faith the Pfalmift, hath he given to the 
children of men, which jhew the title comes 
from fatherhood. 

§. 22. Before I examine this argument, and 
the text oh which it is founded, it is necef- 
fary to defire the reader to obferve, that our 
author, according to his ufual method, begins 
in one fenfe, and concludes in another ; he 
begins here with Adam's propriety, or private 
dominion, by donation ; and his conclusion is, 
which Jhew the title comes from fatherhood. 

§.23. But let us fee the argument. The 
words of the text are thefe ; and God blejfed 
them, and God faid unto them, be fruitful and 
multiply, and replenijh the earth and fubdue it, 
and have dominion over the fifo of the fea, and 
over the fowl of the air, and over every living 
thing that moveth upon the earth, i. Gen. 28. 
from whence our author concludes, that 
Adam, having here dominion given him over 
all creatures, was thereby the monarch of the 


s6 Of Government. 

'whole world: whereby mutt be meant, that 
either this grant of God gave Adam property, 
or as our author calls it, private dominion over 
the earth, and all inferior or irrational crea- 
tures, and fo confequently that he was thereby 
monarchy or 2dly, that it gave him rule and 
dominion over all earthly creatures whatlb-. 
ever, and thereby over his children ; and fo 
he was monarch : for, as Mr. Selden has pro- 
perly worded it, Adam was made general lord 
of all things, one may very clearly underftand 
him, that he means nothing to be granted 
to Adam here but property, and therefore he 
fays not one word of Adam's monarchy. But 
our author fays, Adam was hereby monarch of 
the world, which, properly fpeaking, lignifies 
fovereign ruler of all the men in the world $ 
and fo Adam, by this grant, mufl be con- 
ftitutod fuch a ruler. If our author means 
otherwife, he might with much clearnefs 
have faid, that Adam was hereby proprietor of 
the whole world. But he begs your pardon 
in that point : clear diftincl: fpeaking not 
ierving every where to his purpofe, you muH: 
not expect it in him, as in Mr. Selden, or 
ether fuch writers. 

§. 24. In oppofition therefore to our au- 
thor's doctrine, that Adam was monarch of the 
k world, founded on this place, I mall 

I. That bv this grant, i. Gen. 28. God 
gave no immediate power to Adam over men, 

• over 

Of Government. 27 

over his children, over thofe of his own 
ipecies ; and fo he was not made ruler, or 
monarchy by this charter. 

2. That by this grant God gave him not 
private dominion over the inferior creatures, 
but right in common with all mankind ; fo 
neither was he monarchy upon the account 
of the property here given him. 

§. 25. 1. That this donation, i. Gen. 28. 
gave Adam no power over men, will appear 
if we confider the words of it : for fince 
all pofitive grants convey no more than the 
exprefs words they are made in will carry, 
let us fee which of them here will comprehend 
mankind, or Ada??is pofterity j and thofe, 
I imagine, if any, mufh be thefe, every living 
thing that maveth : the words in Hebrew are, 
W2"IH rtfl i. e. Beftiam Reptantem, of which 
words the icripture itfelf is the befl inter- 
preter : God having created the fifhes and 
fowls the t;th day, the beginning of the 6th, 
he creates the irrational inhabitants of the 
dry land, which, v. 24. are defcribed in 
thefe words, let the earth bring forth the living 
creature after his kind; cattle and creeping 
things, and beajls of the earth, after his kind, 
and, v. 2. and God made the beafls of the earth 
after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and 
every thi?ig that creepeth on the earth after his 
kind : here, in the creation of the brute in- 
habitants of the earth, he firfl fpeaks of them 
all under one general name, of living crea- 
tures, ' 

2$ Of Government. 

iures, and then afterwards divides them into 
three ranks, I . Cattle, or fuch creatures as 
were or might be tame, and fo be the private 
pofleffion of particular men ; 2. iW which, 
ver. 24, and 25. in our Bible, is tranflated 
beaits, and by the Septuagint (bw«, wild beafts, 
and is the fame word, that here in our text, 
Ver. 28. where we have this great charter to 
Adam, is tranflated living things and is alfo 
the fame word ufed, Gen. ix. 2. where this 
<rrant is renewed to Noah, and there like wife 
tranflated beaji. 3. The third rank were the 
creeping animals, which ver. 24, and 25. 
are comprised under the word, rTOTtn, the 
fame that is ufed here, ver. 28. and is tranf- 
lated moving, but in the former verfes creep- 
ing, and by the Septuagint in all thefe places, 
zpTrerd, or reptils ; from whence it appears, 
that the words which we tranllate here in 
God's donation, ver. 28. living creatures moving, 
are the fame, which in the hiflory of the 
creation, ver. 24, 25. lignify two ranks of 
terreflrial creatures, viz. wild beajls and rep- 
tils, and are fo underftood by the Septuagint. 

§. 26. When God had made the irrational 
animals of the world, divided into three kinds, 
from the places of their habitation, viz. 
fifes of the fea, fowls of the air, and living 
creatures of the earth, and thefe again into 
cattle, wild beafis, and reptils, he confiders 
of making man, and the dominion he fhould 
feavt over the terreflrial worlds ver. 26. and 


Of Government. 29 

then he reckons up the inhabitants of thefe 
three kingdoms, but in the terreftrial leaves 
out the fecond rank jrn or wild hearts: but 
here, ver. 28. where he actually exercifes 
this defign, and gives him this dominion, the 
text mentions the ftjhes of the fea, and fowls 
of the air, and the terreftrial creatures in the 
words that fignify the wild beafts and reptils, 
though tr an Hated living thing that movetb, 
leaving out cattle. In both which places, 
though the word that fignifies wild beajh be 
omitted in one, and that which fignifies cattle 
in the other, yet, fince God certainly exe- 
cuted in one place, what he declares he de- 
ligned in the other, we cannot but under- 
stand the fame in both places, and have here 
only an account, how the terreftrial irrational 
animals, which were alreadv created and 
reckoned up at their creation, in three di- 
stinct ranks of cattle, wild beafts, and reptils, 
were here, ver. 28. actually put under the 
dominion of man, as they were defigned, 
*oer. 26. nor do thefe words contain in them 
the leaft appearance of any thing that can 
be wrefted to fignify God's giving to one 
man dominion over another, to Adam over 
his pofterity. 

§. 27. And this further appears from Gen. 

ix. 2. where God renewing this charter to 

Noah and his fons, he gives them dominion 

over the fowls of the air, and the ft/ljes of the 

fea, and the terrcftrial creatures, exprefTed by 

30 Of Government. 

PITT and tt*DTT wild hearts and reptils, the 
fame words that in the text before us, i. Gen. 
28. are tranflated every moving thing, that 
vioveth on the earthy which bv no means can 
comprehend man, the grant being made to 
Noah and his fons, all the men then living, 
and not to one part of men over another : 
which is yet more evident from the very next 
words, vcr. 3. where God gives every 1PtT\ 
every moving thing, the very words ufed, 
ch. i. 28. to them for food. By all which 
it is plain that God's donation to Adam, 
ch. i. 28. and his defignation, ver. 26. and 
his grant again to Noah and his fons, refer 
to and contain in them neither more nor lefs 
than the works of the creation the 5th day, 
and the beginning of the 6th, as they are 
fet down from the 20th to 26th ver. in- 
clufively of the id; ch. and fo comprehend 
all the fpecies of irrational animals of the 
terraqueous globe, tho* all the words, whereby 
they are exprelTed in the hiftory of their 
Creation, are no where ufed in any of the 
following grants, but fome of them omitted 
in one, and fome in another. From whence 
I think it is pad: all doubt, that man cannot 
be comprehended in this grant, nor any do- 
minion over thofe of his own fpecies be 
conveyed to Adam. All the terreflrial ir- 
rational creatures are enumerated at their 
creation, ver. 25. under the names beafts of 
the earth, cattle and creeping things j but man, 


Of Government. 31 

being not then created, was not contained 
under any of thofe names j and therefore, 
whether we underftand the Hebrew words 
right or no, they cannot be fuppofed to 
comprehend man, in the very fame hiftory, 
and the very next verfes following, efpecially 
iince that Hebrew word DOT which, if any 
in this donation to Adam, ch. i. 28. muft 
comprehend man, is fo plainly ufed in con- 
tradi fUnction to him, as Gen. vi. 20. vii. 14, 
21,23. Gen. viii. 17, 19. And if God made 
all mankind Haves to Adcun and his heirs by 
giving Adam dominion over every living thing 
that moveth on the earth, ch. i. 28. as our 
author would have it, methinks Sir Robert 
mould have carried his monarchical power 
one ftep higher, and fatisfied the world, 
that princes might eat their fubje&s too, 
fince God gave as full power to Noah and 
his heirs, ch. ix. 2. to eat every living thing 
that moveth, as he did to Adam to have » do- 
minion over them, the Hebrew' words in both 
places being the fame. 

§.28. David, who might be fuppofed to 
underftand the donation of God in this text, 
and the right of kings too, as well as our 
author in his comment on this place, as the 
learned and judicious Ainfworth calls it, in the 
8th Pfalm, rinds here nofuch charter of mo- 
narchical power, his words are, Thou haft ??iade 
him, i. e. man, the Son of man, a little lower 
than the angels ; thou madcjl him to have dominion 
ever the works of thy hands -, thou haft put all 


32 Of Government. 

things under his feet, all Jheep and oxen, and 
the beajis of the field, and the fowls of the air, 
and fifh of the fea, and whatfover paffeth thro* 
the paths of the fea. In which words, if any 
one can find out, that there is meant any 
monarchical power of one man over another, 
but only the dominion of the whole fpecies 
of mankind, over the inferior fpecies of crea- 
tures, he may, for aught I know, deferve to 
be one of Sir Robert's monarchs in habit, for 
the rarenefs of the difcovery. And by this 
time, I hope it is evident, that he that gave 
dominion over every living thing that moveth on^ 
the earth, gave Ada?n no monarchical power 
over thofe of his own fpecies, which will 
yet appear more fully in the next thing I am 
to mew. 

§. 29. 2. Whatever God gave by the words 
of this grant, i. Gen. 28. it was not to Adam 
in particular, exclufive of all other men : 
whatever dominion he had thereby, it was not 
a private dominion, but a dominion in common 
with the reft of mankind. That this do- 
nation was not made in particular to Adam, 
appears evidently from the words of the text, 
it being made to more than one; for it was 
fpoken in the plural number, God bleiTed 
them, and faid unto them, Have dominion. 
God fays unto Adam and Eve, Have domi- 
nion ; thereby, fays our author, Adam was 
monarch of the world : but the grant being 
to them, i. e. fpoke to Eve alfo, as many 


Of Government. 33 

interpreters think with reafon, that thefe 
words were not fpoken till Adam had his 
wife, mutt not me thereby be lady, as well 
as he lord of the world ? If it be faid, that 
Eve was fubjecled to Adam, it feems fhe was 
not fo fubjecled to him, as to hinder her do- 
minion over the creatures, or property in them : 
for fliall we fay that God ever made a joint 
grant to two, and one only was to have the 
benefit of it ? 

§. 30. But perhaps it will be faid, Eve 
was not made till afterward : grant it fo, 
what advantage will our author get by it ? 
The text will be only the more directly 
againft him, and fhew that God, in this 
donation, gave the world to mankind in 
common, and not to Adam in particular. 
The word them in the text muft include the 
fpecies of man, for it is certain them can by 
no means fignify Adam alone. In the 26th 
Verfe, where God declares his intention to 
give this dominion, it is plain he meant, 
that he would make a fpecies of creatures, 
that fhould have dominion over the other 
fpecies of this terreftrial globe : the words are, 
And God faid. Let us make man in our image, 
after our likenefs, and let them have dominion 
over thejifi, &c. 'They then were to have do- 
minion. Who ? even thofe who were to 
have the image of God, the individuals of 
that fpecies of ?nan, that he was going to 
make -, for that them mould fignify Adam. 

D fingly, 

34 Of Government. 

fingly, exclufive of the reft that fhould be 
in the world with him, is againft both fcrip- 
ture and all reafon : and it cannot poffibly 
be made fenfe, if man in the former part of 
the vcrfe do not fignify the lame with them 
in the latter •> only man there, as is ufual, is 
taken for the fpecies, and them the individuals 
of that fpecies : and we have a reafon in the 
very text. God makes him in his own image, 
after his own like?iefs; makes him an intel- 
lectual creature, and fo capable of dominion: 
for wherein foever elfe the image of God con- 
firmed, the intellectual nature was certainly a 
part of it, and belonged to the whole fpecies, 
and enabled them to have dominion over the 
inferior creatures ; and therefore David fays 
in the 8 th Pfalm above cited, Thou hafi ??iade 
him little lower than the angels, thou haft made 
him to have dominion. It is not of Adam king 
David fpeaks here, for verfe 4. it is plain, it 
is of man, and the fon of man, of the fpecies 
of mankind. 

§.31. And that this grant fpoken to Adam 
was made to him, and the whole fpecies of 
man, is clear from our author's own proof out 
of the Pfalmijl. The earth, faith the Pfalmift, 
hath he given to the children of men -, which 
feews the title comes from fatherhood. Thefe 
are Sir Robert's words in the preface before 
cited, and a ftrange inference it is he makes; 
God hath given the earth to the children of 
men, ergo the title comes from fatherhood. It is 


Of Government. 35 

pity the propriety of the Hebrew tongue had not 
ufed fathers of men, inflead of children of men y 
to exprefs mankind : then indeed our author 
might have had the countenance of the found 
of the words, to have placed the title in the 
fatherhood. But to conclude, that the father- 
hood had the right to the earth, becaufe God 
gave it to the children of men, is a way of 
arguing peculiar to our author : and a man 
mufl have a great mind to go contrary to the 
found as well as fenfe of the words, before 
he could light on it. But the fenfe is yet 
harder, and more remote from our author's 
purpofe : for as it ftands in his preface, it is 
to prove Adams being monarch, and his 
reafoning is thus, God gave the earth to the 
children of men, ergo Adam was monarch of the 
world. I defy any man to make a more 
pleafant conclufion than this, which cannot 
be excufed from the mod obvious abfurdity, 
till it can be fhewn, that by children of 7nen y 
he who had no father, Adam alone is iig- 
nified ; but whatever our author does, the 
fcripture fpeaks not nonfenfe. 

§. 32. To maintain tins property and private 
dominion of Adam, our author labours in the 
following page to deftroy the community 
granted to Noah and his fons, in that parallel 
place, ix. Gen. 1, 2, 3. and he endeavours to 
do it two ways. 

I. Sir Robert would perfuade us againfc 
the exprefs words of the fcripture, that what 

D 2 was 

36 Of Government. 

was here granted to Noah, was not granted 
to his fons in common with him. His words 
are, As for the general community between Noah 
and his fons, which Mr. Selden will have to 
be granted to them, ix. Gen. 2. the text doth not 
warrant it. What warrant our author would 
have, when the plain exprefs words of fcrip- 
ture, not capable of another meaning, will 
not fatisfy him, who pretends to build wholly 
on fcripture, is not eafy to imagine. The text 
fays, God blejfed Noah and his Jons, and faid 
unto them, i. e. as our author would have it, 
unto him : for, faith he, although the fons are 
there mentioned with Noah in the blefjing, yet 
it may beft be underfood, with a fubordination 
cr benediction in fuccefjion, Obfervations, 211. 
That indeed is beft, for our author to be un- 
dei flood, which bed ferves to his purpofe -, 
but that truly may beft be underfood by any 
body elfe, which beft agrees with the plain 
conftruction of the words, and arifes from 
the obvious meaning of the place; and then 
with fubordination and in fucceffon, will not 
be bef underfood, in a grant of God, where 
he himfelf put them not, nor mentions any 
fuch limitation. But yet, cur author has 
reafons, why it may bef be underfood fo. The 
bleffng, fays he in the following words, might 
truly be fulfilled, if the fons, either under or 
- after their father, enjoyed a private dominion, 
Obfervations, 211. which is to fay, that a 
grant, whofe exprefs words give a joint title 


Of Government. 37 

in prcfent (for the text fays, into your hands 
they are deliyered) may befi be underjlood with 
a fub ordination or in fiiccejjion ; becaufe it is 
poffible, that \wfub ordination, or infuccejjion, it 
may be enjoyed. Which is all one as to fay, 
that a grant of any thing in prefent poffeffion 
may bejl be underjlood of reveriion ; becaufe it 
is poffible one may live to enjoy it in rever- 
iion. If the grant be indeed to a father and 
to his fons after him, who is fo kind as to 
let his children enjoy it prefently in common 
with him, one may truly fay, as to the event 
one will be as good as the other; but it can 
never be true, that what the exprefs words 
grant in poffeffion, and in common, may befl 
be underjlood, to be in reverfion. The fum 
of all his reafoning amounts to this : God 
did not give to the fons of Noah the world in 
common with their father, becaufe it was 
poffible they might enjoy it under, or after 
him. A very good fort of argument again (I 
an exprefs text of fcripture : but God mull: 
not be believed, though he fpeaks ithimfelf, 
when he fays he does any thing, which will 
not confift with Sir Robert's hypothecs. 

§. 33. For it is plain, however he would ex- 
clude them, that part of this benediction, as he 
would have it mfuccejjion, muft: needs be meant 
to the fons, and not to Noah himfelf at all : Be 
fruitful, and multiply, and replenijh the earth, 
fays God, in this bleffing. This part of the 
benediction, as appears by the fequel, con- 
D 3 ccrned 

38 Of Government. 

cerned not Noah himfelf at all ; for we read 
not of any children he had after the flood'; 
and in the following chapter, where his pof- 
terity is reckoned up, there is no mention 
of any; and fo this benediction in fuccejjion 
was not to take place till 350 years after : 
and to fave our author's imaginary monarchy* 
the peopling of the world mud be deferred 
350 years ; for this part of the benediction 
cannot be underffood with fubordination, un- 
lefs our author will fay, that they mufl afk 
leave of their father Noah to lie with their 
wives. But in this one point our author is 
conftant to himfelf in all his difcourfes, he 
takes great care there mould be monarchs in 
the world, but very little that there mould be 
people ; and indeed his way of government is 
riot the way to people the world : for how much 
abfolute monarchy helps to fulfil this great and 
primary bleffing of God Almighty, Be fruit" 
July and multiply, and repknijh the earth, 
which contains in it the improvement too of 
arts and fciences, and the conveniences of 
life, may be feen in thofe large and rich coun- 
tries which are happy under the Turkiffj go- 
vernment, where are not now to be found 
one third, nay in many, if not moft. parts 
of them one thirtieth, perhaps I might fay not 
one hundredth of the people, that were for- 
merly, as will eafijy appear to any one, who 
will compare the accounts we have of it at 


Of Government. 39 

this time, with antient hiftory. But this by 

the by. 

§.34. The other parts of this benediction, 
or grant, are fo expreffed, that they muft 
needs be underftood to belong equally to 
them all ; as much to Noah's fons as to 
Noah himfelf, and not to his fons with a 
fubordination, or infuccejjion. The fear of you-, 
and the dread of you, fays God, fhall be upon 
every beafl, &c. Will any body but our au- 
thor fay, that the creatures feared and flood 
in awe of Noah only, and not of his fons 
without his leave, or till after his death? And 
the following words, into your hands they are 
delivered, are they to be underftood as our 
author fays, if your father pleafe, or they 
fhall be delivered into your hands hereafter ? 
If this be to argue from fcripture, I know 
not what may not be proved by it ; and I 
can fcarce fee how much this differs from 
that ficlion and fanfe, or how much a fu- 
rer foundation it will prove, than the opi- 
nions of philofophers and poets, which our au- 
thor fo much condemns in his preface. 

§. 35. But our author goes on to prove, 
that it may bejl be underftood with a fubordina- 
tion, or a benediBion in fuccefjion ;for, favs he, 
it is not probable that the private do?ninio7i which 
God gave to Adam, and by his donation, qjjig- 
nation, or ceffton to his children, was abroga- 
ted, and a community of all things injlituted be- 
tween Noah and his fons Noah was left 

thefole heir of the world; why fiould it be thought 
D 4 that 

40 Of Government. 

that God would difmherit him of his birth-right* 
end make him of all men in the world the only 
tenant in common with his children? Obfervations, 

21 I. 

§.36. The prejudices of our own ill-ground- 
ed opinions, however by us called probable, can- 
not authorife us to underftand fcripture con- 
trary to the direct and plain meaning of the 
words. I grant, it is not probable, that Adams 
private dominion was here abrogated : becaufe 
it is more than improbable, (for it will never 
be proved) that ever Ada?n had any fuch pri- 
vate dominion ; and fince parallel places of 
fcripture are moil probable to make us know 
how they may be bejl under food, there needs 
but the comparing this bleffing here to Noah 
and his fons after the flood, with that to Adam 
after the creation, i. Gen. 28. to allure any 
one that God gave Adam no fuch private do- 
minion. It is probable, I confefs, that Noah 
mould have the fame title, the fame property 
and dominion after the flood, that Adam had 
before it : but fince private dominion cannot 
confift with the bleffing and grant God gave 
to him and his fons in common, it is a fuffi- 
cient reafon to conclude, that Adam had none, 
efpecially fince in the donation made to him, 
there are no words that exprefs it, or do in 
the lead favour it ; and then let my reader 
judge whether it may bejl be underjiood, when 
in the one place there is not one word for it, 
not to fay what has been above proved, that 


Of Government. 41 

the text itfelf proves the contrary ; and in 
the other, the words and fenfe are directly 
againfl it. 

§. 37. But our author fays, Noah was the 
file heir of the world 5 why jloould it be thought 
that God would difinherit' him of his birth-right? 
Heir, indeed, in England, fignifies the elded 
fon,whois by the law of England to have all his 
father's land j but where God ever appointed 
any fuch heir of the world, our author would 
have done well to have (hewed us ; and how 
God dijinherited him of his birth-i'ight, or what 
harm was done him if God gave his fons 
a right to make ufe of a part of the earth for 
the fupport of themfelves and families, when 
the whole was not only more than Noah him- 
felf, but infinitely more than they all could 
make ufe of, and the poffeffions of one could 
not at all prejudice, or, as to any ufe, (heigh- 
ten that of the other. 

§.38. Our author probably forefeeing he 
might not be very fuccefsful in perfuading 
people out of their fenfes, and, fay what 
he could, men would be apt to believe 
the plain words of fcripture, and think, 
as they faw, that the grant was fpoken to 
Noah and his fons jointly ; he endeavours 
to infinuate, as if this grant to Noah con- 
veyed no property, no dominion ; becaufe, 
fubdumg the earth and dommion over the crea- 
tures are therein omitted, nor the earth once na- 
med. And therefore, fays he, there is a con- 


4.2 ^ F Government. 

fiderable difference between thefe two texts ; the 
Jirfi bleffing gave Adam a dominion over the 
earth and all creatures ; the latter allows Noah 
liberty to ufe the living creatures for food : here 
is no alteration or diminijlmig of his title to a 
property of all things, but an enlargement only of 
his commons, Gbfervations, 21 1. So that in 
our author's fenfe, all that was faid here to Noah 
and his fons, gave them no dominion, no pro- 
perty, but only enlarged the commons -, their 
commons, I mould fay, fince God fays, to you 
are they given, though our author fays his - 3 
for as for Noah's fons, they, it feems, by Sir 
Robert's appointment, during their father's 
life-time, were to keep farting days. 

§. 39. Any one but our author would be 
mightily fufpe&ed to be blinded with pre- 
judice, that in all this bleffing to Noah and 
his fons, could fee nothing but only an en- 
largement of commons : for as to dominion-, 
which our author thinks omitted, the fear of 
you, and the dread of you, fays God, flail be up- 
on every beaft, which I fuppofe expreffes the 
dominion, or fuperiority was deligned man over 
the living creatures, as fully as may be ; 
for in that fear and dread feems chiefly to 
confift what was given to Adam over the in- 
ferior animals ; who, as abfolute a monarch 
as he was, could not make bold with a lark 
or rabb,et to fatisfy his hunger, and had 
the herbs but in common with the beafts, 
as is plain from i Gen. 2, 9, and 30. In the 


Of Government. 43 

next place, it is manifefl: that in this bleff- 
ing to Noah and his fons, property is not 
only given in clear words, but in a larger ex- 
tent than it was to Adam. Into your bands 
they are given, fays God to Noah and his fonsj 
vh'ch words, if they give not property, 
nay, property in poffeflion, it will be hard 
to find words that can ; fince there is not a 
way to exprefs a man's being porTefTed of any 
thing more natural, nor more certain, than 
to fay, it is delivered into his hands. And ver. 
3. to fhew, that they had then given them 
the utmoft property man is capable of, which 
is to have a right to deftroy any thing by 
ufing it j Every moving thing that liveth, faith 
God, Jhall be meat for you -, which was not al- 
lowed to Adam in his charter. This our au- 
thor calls, a liberty of ufing them for food, and 
only an enlargement of commons, but no altera- 
tion of property, Obfervations, 211. What other 
property man can have in the creatures, but 
the liberty of ufing them, is hard to be under- 
flood : fo that if the firft bleffing, as our au- 
thor fays, gave Adam dominion over the crea- 
tures, and the bleffing to Noah and his fons, 
gave them fuch a liberty to life them, as Adam 
had not ; it muft needs give them fomething 
that Adam with all his fovereignty wanted, 
fomething that one would be apt to take for a 
greater property ; for certainly he has no 
abfolute dominion over even the brutal part 
of the creatures ; and the property he has in, 
3 them 

44 O f Government. 

them is very narrow and fcanty, who can- 
not make that ufe of them, which is permit- 
ted to another. Should any one who if, abfo- 
lute lord of a country, have bidden our au- 
thov fubdue the earth, and given him domi- 
nion over the creatures in it, but not have 
permitted him to have taken a kid or a lamb 
out of the flock, to fatisfy his hunger, I 
guefs, he would fcarce have thought him- 
telf lord or proprietor of that land, or the 
cattle on it ; but would have found the dif- 
ference between having dominion, which a 
fhepherd may have, and having full property 
as an owner. So that, had it been his own 
cafe, Sir Robert, I believe, would have thought 
here was an alteration, nay, an enlarging of 
property ; and that Noah and his children had 
by this grant, not only property given them, 
but fuch a property given them in the crea- 
tures, as Adam had not : For however, in 
refpect of one another, men may be allowed 
to have propriety in their diftincl: portions of 
the creatures ; yet in refpect of God the 
maker of heaven and earth, who is fole lord 
and proprietor of the whole world, man's 
propriety in the creatures is nothing but that 
liberty to ufe them, which God has permitted ; 
and fo man's property may be altered and 
enlarged, as we fee it was here, after the 
flood, when other ufes of them are allowed, 
which before were not. From all which I 
fuppofe it is clear, that neither Adam, nor 
2 Noah, 

Of Government. 4$ 

Noah, had any private dominion, any property 
in the creatures, exclufive of his pofterity, 
as they mould fucceffively grow up into need 
of them, and come to be able to make ufe 
of them. 

§.40. Thus we have.examined our author's 
argument for Adam's monarchy, founded on 
the bleffing pronounced, i.Gen. 28. Where- 
in I think it is impomble for any fober rea- 
der, to find any other but the fetting of 
mankind above the other kinds of creatures, 
in this habitable earth of ours. It is nothing 
but the giving to man, the whole fpecies of 
man, as the chief inhabitant, who is the 
image of his Maker, the dominion over the 
other creatures. This lies fo obvious in the 
plain words, that any one, but our author, 
would have thought it neceffary to have 
fhewn, how thefe words, that feemed to fay 
the quite contrary, gave Adam monarchical 
abfolute power over other men, or the file 
property in all the creatures ; and methinks 
in a bulinefs of this moment, and that where- 
on he builds all that follows, he mould have 
done fomething more than barely cite words, 
which apparently make againft him ; for I 
confefs, I cannot fee any thing in them, tend- 
ing to Adams monarchy, or private dominion, 
but quite the contrary. And I the lefs de- 
plore the dulnefs of my apprehenfi©n herein, 
fince I find the apoftle feems to have as little 
notion of any fuch private dominion of Adam 


46 Or Government. 

as I, when he fays, God gives us all things 
richly to enjoy, which he could not do, if 
it were all given away already, to Monarch 
Adam, and the monarchs his heirs and fuc- 
ceffors. To conclude, this text is fo far 
from proving Adam fole proprietor, that, on 
the contrary, it is a confirmation of the ori- 
ginal community of all things amongft the 
Ions of men, which appearing from this do- 
nation of God, as well as other places of 
fcripture, the fovereignty of Adam, built up- 
on his private dominion, muft fall, not having 
any foundation to fupport it. 

§. 41. But yet, if after all, any one will 
needs have it fo, that by this donation of 
God, Adam was made fole proprietor of the 
whole earth, what will this be to his fove- 
reignty ? and how will it appear, that pro- 
priety in land gives a man power over the life 
of another ? or how will the porTeffion even 
of the whole earth, give any one a fovereign 
arbitrary authority over the perfons of men ? 
The moil fpecious thing to be faid, is, that he 
that is proprietor of the whole world, may 
deny all the reft of mankind food, and fo at 
his pleafure ftarve them, if they will not 
acknowledge his fovereignty, and obey his 
will. If this were true, it would be a good 
argument to prove, that there never was 
any fuch property, that God never gave 
any fuch private dominion ; iince it is more 
reafonable to think, that God, who bid man- 

Of Government. 47 

kind increafe and multiply, mould rather 
himfelf give them all a right to make ufe of 
the food and raiment, and other conveniences 
of life, the materials whereof he had fo plen- 
tifully provided for them ; than to make them 
depend upon the will of a man for their fub- 
fiftence, who mould have power to deftroy 
them all when he pleafed, and who, being 
no better than other men, was in fucceffion 
likelier, by want and the dependence of a fcanty 
fortune, to tie them to hard fervice, than by- 
liberal allowance of the conveniences of life 
to promote the great defign of God, increafe 
and multiply : he that doubts this, let him 
look into theabfolute monarchies of the world, 
and fee what becomes of the conveniences of 
life, and the multitudes of people. 

§. 42. But we know God hath not left one 
man fo to the mercy of another, that he may 
ftarve, him if he pleafe : God the Lord and 
Father of all has given no one of his chil- 
dren luch a property in his peculiar portion 
of the things of this world, but that he has 
given his needy brother a right to the fur- 
plulage of his goods ; fo that it cannot juflly 
be denied him, when his preffing wants call 
for it : and therefore no man could ever 
have a juft power over the life of another 
by right of property in land or poiTeffions ; 
fince it would always be a lin, in any man of 
eftate, to let his brother perim for want of 
affording him relief out of his plenty. As 


48 Of Government. 

juftice gives every man a title to the product 
of his honeft induftry, and the fair acquis- 
itions of his ancellors defcended to him - y 
fo charity gives every man a title to fo much 
out of another's plenty, as will keep him 
from extreme want, where he has no means 
to fubfift otherwife : and a man can no more 
j ti illy make ufe of another's neceffity, to force 
him to become his vaffal, by with-holding 
that relief, God requires him to afford to the 
wants of his brother, than he that has more 
ftrength can feize upon a weaker, matter him 
to his obedience, and with a dagger at his 
throat offer him death or flavery. 

§. 43. Should any one make fo perverfe an 
ufe of God's bleffings poured on him with a 
liberal hand ; mould any one be cruel and 
uncharitable to that extremity, yet all this 
would not prove that propriety in land, even 
in this cafe, gave any authority over the per- 
fons of men, but only that compact might j 
fince the authority of the rich proprietor, and 
the fubjecTtion of the needy beggar, began not 
from the poffeffion of the Lord, but the con- 
fent of the poor man, who preferred being 
his fubject. to ftarving. And the man he thus 
fubmits to, can pretend to no more power 
over him, than he has confented to, upon corn- 
pad:. Upon this ground a man's having his 
flores filled in a time of fcarcity, having mo- 
ney in his pocket, being in a velTel at fea, 
being able to fwim, &c. may as well be 


Of Government. 49 

the foundation of rale and dominion, as being 
poifefTor of all the land in the world ; any of 
thefe being fufficient to enable me to fave a 
man's life, who would perifh if fuch affi fiance 
were denied himj and any thing, by this rule, 
that may be an occafion of working upon 
another's neceffity, to fave his life, or 
any thing dear to him, at the rate of his 
freedom, may be made a foundation of fove- 
reignty, as well as property. From all which 
it is clear, that though God fhould have given 
Adam private dominion, yet that private domi- 
nion could give him no fovereignty ; but we 
have already fufficiently proved, that God 
gave him no private dominion . 


Of Adam's Title to Sovereignty by the Subjection 
of Eve. 

§. 44. t 1 ^HE next place of fcriptnre we 
£_ rind our author builds his mo- 
narchy of Adam on, is iii. Gen. 26. And thy 
dejire Jhall be to thy hnjband, and he foall rule 
over thee. Here ive have (fays he) the origi- 
nal grant of government, from whence he con- 
cludes, in the following part of the page, 
Ob/trvations, 244. That the fupreme power is 
fettled in the fatherhood, and limited to one kind 
cf government, that is, to monarchy. For let 
his premifes be what they will, this is al- 
ways the conclusion ; let rule, in any text, be 
but once named, and prefently abfolute mo- 
E natqhy 

50 Of Government. 

narcby is by divine right eftablifhed. If any 
one will but carefully read our author's own 
reafoning from thefe words, Ohfervations, 244. 
and conlider, among other things the line and 
pojkrity of Adam, as he there brings them in, 
he will find fome difficulty to make fenfe of 
what he fays ; but we will allow this at pre- 
fent to his peculiar way of writing, and con- 
lider the force of the text in hand. The 
words are the curfe of God upon the wo- 
man, for having been the firft and forwardeft 
in the difobedience ; and if we will confider 
the occafion of what God fays here to our 
firfl parents, that he was denouncing judg- 
ment, and declaring his wrath againft them 
both, for their difobedience, we cannot fup- 
pofe that this was the time, wherein Gcd was 
granting Adam prerogatives and privileges, in- 
verting him with dignity and authority, eleva- 
ting him to dominion and monarchy : for 
though, as a helper in the temptation, Eve was 
laid below him, and fo he had accidentally a 
fuperiority over her, for her greater punifh- 
. ment j yet he too had his (hare in the fail, as 
. well as the fin, and was laid lower, as may be 
feen in the following verfes ; and it would 
be hard to imagine, that God, in the fame 
breath, mould make him univerfal monarch 
over all mankind, and a day-labourer for his 
life ; turn him cut o$para£fe to till the ground, 
vcr. i\. and at the fame time advance him 
to a throne, and all the privileges and eafe of 
abielute power. 

§■ 45- 

Of Government. 51 

§.45. This was not a time, when Adam 
could expect any favours, any grant of pri- 
vileges, from his offended Maker. If thi; 
be the original grant of government , as our au- 
thor tells us, and Adam was now made mo- 
narch, whatever Sir Robert would have him* it 
is plain, God made him but a very poor mo- 
narch, fuch an one, as our author himfelf 
■would have counted it no great privilege to 
be. God fets him to work for his living, 
and feems rather to give him a fpade into his 
hand, to fubdue the earth, than a fceptre to 
rule over its inhabitants. In the fweat of thy 
face thou fl: alt eat thy bread, fays God to him, 
*ver. 19. This was unavoidable, may it per- 
haps be anfwered, becaufe he was yet with- 
out fubjects, and had nobody to work for 
him 3 but afterwards, living as he did above 
900 years, he might have people enough* 
whom he might command, to work for him -, 
no, fays God, not only whilft thou art with^ 
out other help, fave thy wife, but .as long 
as thou liveft, (halt thou live by thy labour, 
In the fweat of thy face, Jhalt thou eat thy 
bread, till thou return unto the ground, for out 
cf it ivaf thou taken, for dujl thou art, and unto 
dujl Jhalt thou return, v. 19. It will perhaps 
be anfwered again in favour of our author, 
that thefe words are not fpoken perfonally 
to Adam, but in him, as their reprefentative, 
to all- mankind, this being a curfe upon man- 
kind, becaufe cf the fall. 

§. 46. God, I believe, fpeaks differently 
from men, becaufe he fpeaks with more truth, 

E 2 . more 

52 Of Government. 

more certaintv : but when he vouchfafes to 
ipeak. to men, I do not think he fpeaks dif- 
ferently from them, in crorTing the rules of 
language in ule amongil them : this would 
not be to condelcend to their capacities, when 
he humbles himlelf to fpeak to them, but to 
loie his defign in fpeaking what, thus fpoken, 
they could not underfland. And yet thus 
mull we think of God, if the interpretations 
of fcripture, neceiTarv to maintain our au- 
thor's doctrine, mull be received for good : 
for by the ordinary rules of language, it 
will be verv hard to underftand what God 
favs, if what he fpeaks here, in the lingular 
number, to Adam, muft be underflood to be 
fpoken to all mankind, and what he fin 
in the plural number, i. Gen. 26, and 28. 
mufl be underflood of Adam alone, exclufive 
of all others, and what he lavs to Noab and 
his ion; jointly, mufl be underflood to be 
meant to Noah alone, Gen. EX. 

^7. Farther it is to be noted, that thefe 
words here of iii. Gen. 16. which our author 
calls tb lal grant of government , in 

net fpoken to Adam, neither indeed was there 
any grant in them made to Adam, but a 
punifhment laid upon Eve: and if we will 
take them as they were directed in particular 
to her, or in her, as their reprefentative, to 
all other women, thev will at mcll conce 
the female fex only, and import no more, 
but that fubjection they lhould ordinarily be 


_• C_ i. 

:■.-•.:- -. . '.:-.: :>-! :r.e:r :: ':. tzt : ~ '« 
..:■; :: ::Li?t 
:: the :::;_~ ::i~:t 
or contract with her 
;.e: ::;r~. .!. :..:". : 
'-rir.z f:r*J- he; :iL: 
if there could he : 
v h:;h i: ill": = :ir: 
her: for the who! 

/;-*■;-_. ;:' :.r-< :: '.:'.:: 

I :':-•:. ~i-t :;t- i :.i:: r.i::t: :";: 2-;, 
: i" . :_::_" : : .". i - 1 : : _ ~. z : _: 2 

rnr.: :: n:is-:z 1:-'. rr.i". -■:'■ '■■ As..--. :j 
rr.e.'r ■;-::::;. "-.:>. ■.-. = :: . : . 

nor of him: neither will any one, I foppoiic, 
:y :'/.-. ~z 7r::i-. ::.:.-: ::.-. .*tis.t: :n~. i; : 
a law, to iobje&ed to the enrte ennrainnri in 
thetB, that it is their duty sot to cadnwr 
to avoid it . And wffl any one lay, that Ewe, 
or any other woman, finned, it £he were 
r:::::: :: :-ei •"■:;-_: _: zr.::t i.::'.::z'..ti ::.-.- 
G:-j ::.:::::::• r.t: r.t:t -.-.:'- : :: zzi: i.zr.t: 
.:' :_:: ::rt; :. _V_: . :- £ .: .:. ■ •: . :.:: :;. :. 
r i:;. -::-;;' :~t.: :'_ r; t . : ? . :.ii :rtr. ':. 
this text pot into a political fhhjnftino to 
him ?• or that he thereby lboald hare had 
- : •;---•.•.::.•.-." -;'..■: :•;: :. ;: '' !-:•: .: ;;.: ::V 
::•:; :::. :~i: I :::. ;-.t £j:'~::!ry :: .:' 
. :-: 1 ;r to men orcr their w; 

54 Of Government. 

only foretels what mould be the woman's 
lot. how by his providence he would order 
it fo, that (he mould be fubjec"t. to her huf- 
band, as we fee that generally the laws of 
mankind and cuftoms of nations have ordered 
it fo -, and there is, I grant, a foundation in 
nature for it. 

§. 48. Thus when God fays of Jacob and 
Efau, that the elder fhould ferve the younger, 
xxv. Gen. 23. no body fuppofes that God 
hereby made Jacob Efaus fovereign, but 
foretold what fhould de facto come to pafs. 

But if thefe words here fpoke to Bye muft 
needs be underftood as a law to bind her and 
all other women to fubjection, it can be no 
other fubjection than what every wife owes 
her hufband ; and then if this be the original 
grant of government and the foundation of mo- 
narchical power, there will be as many mo- 
narchy as there are hufbands : if therefore 
thefe words give any power to Adam, it can 
be only a conjugal power, not political ; the 
power that every hufband hath to order the 
things of private concernment in his family, 
as proprietor of the goods and land there, 
and to have his will take place before that 
of his wife in all things of their common 
concernment ; but not a political power of 
life and death over her, much lefs over any 
body elfe. 

§. 49. This I am fure : if our author will 
have this text to be a grant, the original grant 

Of Government. $$ 

of govermnent , political government, he ought 
to have proved it by fome better arguments 
than by barely faying, that thy dejire jhall be 
unto thy hujband, was a law whereby Eve, and 
all that JJjould come of her, were fub jedted to 
the abfolute monarchical power of Ada?n and 
his heirs. 'Thy defire jhall be to thy hujband, 
is too doubtful an expreffion, of whofe figni- 
fication interpreters are not agreed, to build 
fo confidently on, and in a matter of fuch 
moment, and fo great and general concern- 
ment : but our author, according to his way 
of writing, having once named the text, 
concludes prefently without any more ado, 
that the meaning is as he would have it. 
Let the words rule and fubjecl be but found 
in the text or margent, and it immediately 
fignifies the duty of a fubjecl: to his prince ; 
the relation is changed, and though God fays 
hujband, Sir Robert will have it king ; Adam 
has prefently abfolute monarchical power over 
Eve, and not only over Eve, but all that 
ftould come of her, though the fcripturc fays 
not a word of it, nor our author a word to 
prove it. But Adam mud for all that be an 
abfolute monarch, and fo down to the end 
of the chapter. And here I leave- my reader 
to confider, whether my bare faying, without 
offering any reafons to evince it, that this 
text 9;ave not Adam that abfolute monarchical 
power, our author fuppofes, be not as fuf- 
ficient to deftroy that power, as his bare af-> ■ 
E 4 fertion 

56 Of Government. 

fcrtion is to eftablifh it, fince the text men- 
tions neither prince nor people, fpeaks nothing 
of abfolute or monarchical power, but the 
fubje&ion of Eve to Adam, a wife to her 
hufband. And he that would trace our au- 
thor fo all through, would make a fhort and 
fufficient anfwer to the greater!; part of the 
grounds he proceeds on, and abundantly 
confute them by barely denying ; it being a 
fufficient anfwer to affertions without proof, 
to deny them without giving a reafon. And 
therefore mould I have faid nothing but 
barely denied, that by this text the fupreme 
power was fettled and founded by God hbifelf, 
in the fatherhood, limited to monarchy, and that 
to Adam'j - perfon and heirs, all which our 
author notably concludes from thefe words, 
as may be feen in the fame page, Obfrvaiions, 
244. it had been a fufficient anfwer : mould 
I have derired any fober man only to have 
read the text, and confidered to whom, and 
on what occafion it was fpoken, he would 
no doubt have wondered how our author 
found out monarchical abfolute power in it, 
had he not had an exceeding good faculty 
to find it himfelf, where he could not fhew 
It others. And thus we have examined the 
two places of fcripture, all that I remember 
our author brings to prove Adam's fovereignty, 
that fupremacy, which he fays, it was God's 
ordinance Jhould be unlimited in Adam, and as 
large as all the acis of his will, Observations, 


Of Government. 5. 

254. viz. i. Gen. 28. and iii. Gen. 16. one 
whereof fignifies only the fubjection of the 
inferior ranks of creatures to mankind, and 
the other the fubjection that is due from a 
wife to her hulband, both far enough from 
that which fubjects owe the governors of 
political focieties. 


Of Adam\r Title to Sovereignty by Fatherhood. 

§. 50. ' a ^HERE is one thing more, and 
J[ then I think I have given you 
all that our author brings for proof of Adam's 
fovereignty, and that is a fuppofition of a 
natural right of dominion over his children, 
by being their father : and this title of fa- 
therhood he is fo pkaicd with, that you will 
find it brought in alrnoft in every page, par- 
ticularly he fays, not only Adam, but the 
fucceeding patriarchs had by right of fatherhood 
royal authority over their children, p. j2. And 
in the fame page, this fubjeclion of children 
being the fountain of all regal authority, &c„ 
This being, as one would think by his fo 
frequent mentioning it, the main bafis of all 
his frame, we may well expect clear and 
evident reafon for it, fince he lays it down as 
a poiition neceffary to his purpofe, that every 
man that is bom is fo far from being free, that by 
his very birth he becomes a fubjeel of him that 


5S Of Government. 

begets him, Obfervations, 156. fo that Adam 
being the only man created, and all ever 
fmcc being begotten, no body has been born 
free. If we afk how Adam comes by this 
power over his children, he tells us here it is 
"by begetting them : and fo again, Obfer- 
vations, 223. this natural dominion of Adam, 
fays he, may be proved out of Grotius himjclf, 
hvho teacheth, that generatione jus acquiritur 
parentikus in liberos. And indeed the acl of 
begetting being that which makes a man a 
father, his right of a father over his children 
can naturally arife from nothing elic. 

§.51. Grotius tells us not here how far 
this jus in liberos, this power of parents over 
their children extends -, but our author, al- 
ways very clear in the point, allures us, it 
is fupreme power, and like that of abfolute 
monarchs over their Haves, abfolute power 
of life and death. He that fhould demand 
of him, how, or for what reafon it is, that 
begetting a child gives the father fuch an 
abfolute power over him, will find him an- 
fwer nothing : we are to take his word for 
this, as well as feveral other things; and by 
that the laws of nature and the conftitutions 
of government mull: Hand or fall. Had he 
been an abfolute monarch, this way of talk- 
ing might have fuited well enough ; pro 
ratione voluntas might have been of force in 
his mouth -, but in the way of proof or ar- 
gument is very unbecoming, and will little 


Of Government. 59 

advantage his plea for abfolute monarchy. 
Sir Robert has too much lefTened a fubjecYs 
authority to leave himfelf the hopes of eila- 
bliihing any thing by his bare faying it ; one 
flave's opinion without proof is not of weight 
enough to difpofe of the liberty and for- 
tunes of all mankind. If all men are not, 
as I think they are, naturally equal, I am 
fure all flaves are; and then I may without 
prefumption oppofe my {ingle opinion to his ; 
and be confident that my faying, that begetting 
of children makes them not jlaves to their fa- 
thers, as certainly fets all mankind free, as 
his affirming the contrary makes them all 
flaves. But that this poiition, which is the, 
foundation of all their doctrine, who would 
have monarchy to be jure divino, may have 
all fair play, let us hear what reafons others 
give for it, fince our author offers none. 

§. 52. The argument, I have heard others 
make ufe of, to prove that fathers, by be- 
getting them, come by an abfolute power 
over their children, is this; that fathers have 
a power over the lives of their children, becaufc 
they give them life and being, which is the only 
proof it is capable of: lince there can be no 
reafon, why naturally one man mould have 
any claim or pretence of right over that in 
another, which was never his, which he be- 
flowed not, but was received from the bounty 
of another. 1. I anfwer, that every one who 
gives another any thing, has not always 


6o Of Cover n m ft n r. 

thereby a right to take it away again. But* 
2. They who fay the father gives life to his 
children, are fo dazzled with the thoughts of 
monarchy, that they do not, as they ought, 
remember God, who is the author and giver 
of life : it is in him alone we live, move, unci 
have our being. Plow can he be thought to 
give life to another, that knows not wherein 
his own life confifls ? Philofophers are at a 
lofs about it after their moil: diligent en- 
quiries ; and anatomifts, after their whole 
lives and fludies fpent in directions, and 
diligent examining the bodies of men, con- 
fefs their ignorance in the ftructure and ufe 
of many parts of man's body, and in that 
operation wherein life confifts in the whole. 
And doth the rude plough-man, or the more 
ignorant voluptuary, frame or fafhion fuch an 
admirable engine as this is, and then put 
life and fenfe into it ? Can any man fay, he 
formed the parts that are neceffary to the 
life of his child ? or can he fuppoie himfelf 
to give the life, and yet not know what 
fubjedfc is fit to receive it, nor what actions 
or organs are neceffary for its reception or 
prefervation ? 

§.53. To give life to that which has yet 
no being, is to frame and make a living 
creature, fafhion the parts, and mould and 
iuit them to their ufes, and having propor- 
tioned and fitted them together, to put into 
them a living foul. He that could do this, 
1 might 

Of Government. 6i 

might indeed have fome pretence to deftroy 
his own workmanfhip. But is there any one 
fo bold, that dares thus far arrogate to him- 
felf the incomprehensible works of the al- 
mighty ? Who alone did at firfl, and con- 
tinues ftill to make a living foul, he alone 
can breathe in the breath of life. If any one 
thinks himfelf an artift at this, let him num- 
ber up the parts of his child's body which 
he hath made, tell me their ufes and opera- 
tions, and when the living and rational foul 
began to inhabit this curious ftructure, when 
leniQ began, and how this engine, which he 
has framed, thinks and reafons : if he made 
it, let him, when it is out of order, mend it, 
at leaft tell wherein the defects lie. Shall kt 
that made the eye not fee ? fays the Pfalmiil, 
Pfalm xciv. 9. See thefe men's vanities! the 
flruclure of that one part is fumcient to 
convince us of an all-wife contriver, and he 
has fo vifible a claim to us as his workman- 
fhip, that one of the ordinary appellations 
of God in fcripture is, God our Maker, and 
the Lord our Maker. And therefore though 
our author, for the magnifying his fatherhood, 
be pleafed to fay, Obfervations, 159. That 
even the power which God himfelf exercifeth over 
mankind Is by right of fatherhood* yet this 
iatherhood is fuch an one as utterly excludes 
all pretence of title in earthly parents ; for 
he is king, becaufe he is indeed maker of us 


62 Of Government. 

all, which no parents can pretend to be of 
their children. 

§. 54. But had men (kill and power to 
make their children, it is not Co (light a piece 
of workmanfhip, that it can be imagined, they 
could make them without deiigning it. What 
father of a thoufand, when he begets a child, 
thinks farther than the fatisfying his prefent 
appetite? God in his infinite wifdom has 
put flrong defires of copulation into the con- 
stitution of men, thereby to continue the race 
of mankind, which he doth moil commonly 
without the intention, and often againff. the 
confent and will of the begetter. And in- 
deed thole who defire and defign children, 
are but the occafions of their being, and 
when they defign and wiih to beget them, 
do little more towards their making, than 
Deucalion and his wife in the fable did to- 
wards the making of mankind, by throwing 
pebbles over their heads. 

§. $5. But grant that the parents made 
their children, £ave them life and beins;, and 
that hence there followed an abiblute power. 
This would give xht father but a joint do- 
minion with the mother over them : for 
no bodv can denv but that the woman hath 
an equal fhare, if net the greater, as nounm- 
ing the child a long time in her own body 
out of her own fubiiance : there it is fa- 
mioned, and from her it receives the ma- 
terials and principles of its eosft&ution : and 


Of Government. 63 

it is fo hard to imagine the rational foul 
mould prefently inhabit the yet unformed 
embrio, as foon as the father has done his 
part in the act of generation, that if it muft 
be fuppofed to derive any thing from the 
parents, it muft certainly owe moft to the 
mother. But be that as it will, the mother 
cannot be denied an equal fhare in begetting 
of the child, and fo the abfolute authority 
of the father will not arife from hence. Our 
author indeed is of another mind ; for he 
fays, We know that God at the creation gave 
the fovereignty to the man over the woman, as 
being the nobler and principal agent in gene- 
ration, Obfervations, 172. I remember not 
this in my Bible; and when the place is 
brought where God at the creation gave the 
fovereignty to man over the woman, and 
that for this reafon, becaufe he is the ?iobler 
.and principal agent in generation, it will be 
time enough to confider, and anfwer it. But 
it is no new thing for our author to tell us his 
own fancies for certain and divine truths, tho* 
there be often a great deal of difference be- 
tween his and divine revelations ; for God in 
the fcripture fays, his father and his mother 
that begot him. 

§, 56. They who alledge the practice of 

mankind, for expofmg or felling their children, 

. as a proof of their power over them, are 

with Sir Robert happy arguers ; and cannot 

but recommend their opinion, by founding , 


64 Of Government. 

it on the moft fhameful a&ion, and moft 
unnatural murder, human nature is capable 
of. The dens of lions and nurferies of 
wolves know no fuch cruelty as this : thefe 
favage inhabitants of the defert obey God 
and nature in being tender and careful of 
their orT-ipring: they will hunt, watch, fight, 
and almoft ftarve for the prefervation of their 
young; never part with them -, never forfake 
them, till they are able to fhift for them- 
felves. And is it the privilege of man alone 
to act more contrary to nature than the 
wild and moft untamed part of the creation ? 
doth God forbid us under the feverefl pe- 
nalty, that of death, to take away the life 
of any man, a ftranger, and upon provo- 
cation ? and does he permit us to deftroy 
thofe, he has given us the charge and care 
of; and by the dictates of nature and rea- 
fon, as well as his revealed command, re- 
quires us to preferve? He has in all the parts 
of the creation taken a peculiar care to pro- 
pagate and continue the feveral fpecies of 
creatures, and makes the individuals act fo 
flrongly to this end, that they fometimes 
neglect their own private good for it, and 
feem to forget that general rule, which na- 
ture teaches all things, of felf-prefervation ; « 
and the prefervation of their young, as 
the ftrongeft principle in them, over-rules 
the conftitution of their particular natures. 
Thus we fee, when their young ftand in 
need of it, the timorous become valiant, 


Of Government. 6$ 

the fierce and favage kind, and the ravenous 
tender and liberal. 

§. $j. But if the example of what hath 
been done, be the rule of what ought to 
be, hiftory would have furnifhed our author 
with inftances of this abfolute fatherly power 
in its height and perfection, and he might 
have fhewed us in Peru, people that begot 
children on purpofe to fatten and eat them. 
The ftory is fo remarkable, that I cannot but 
fet it down in the author's words. " In fome 
" provinces, fays he, they were fo liquori(h 
" after man's flefh, that they would not have 
" the patience to flay till the breath was 
" out of the body, but would fuck the blood 
" as it ran from the wounds of the dying 
" man ; they had public fhambles of man's 
" flefh, and their madnefs herein was to 
u that degree, that they fpared not their 
" own children, which they had begot on 
" Grangers taken in war : for they made 
M their captives their miftrefTes, and choicely 
" nourifhed the children they had by them, 
" till about thirteen years old they butchered 
'* and eat them \ and they ferved the mo- 
" thers after the fame faihion, when they 
<f grew pail child bearing, and ceafed- to 
<f bring them any more roarers," Garcilaffb 
de la Vega hijl. des Yncas de Peru, 1. i. c. 12. 

§. 58. Thus far can the bufy mind of man 

carry him to a brutality below the level of 

hearts, when he quits his reaibn, which 

F places 

66 Of Government. 

places him almoft equal to angels. Nor can 
it be otherwife in a creature, whofe thoughts 
are more than the fands, and wider than the 
ocean, whe?e fancy and pafTion muft needs 
run him into ftrange courfes, if reafon, which 
is his only ftar and compafs, be not that he 
fleers by. The imagination is always reft- 
lefs, and fuggefts variety of thoughts, and the 
will, reafon being laid afide, is ready for every 
extravagant project ; and in this ftate, he 
that goes fartheft out of the way, is thought 
fitteft to lead, and is fure of moft followers : 
and when fafhion hath once eftablifhed what 
folly or craft began, cuftom makes it facred, 
and it will be thought impudence, or mad- 
nefs, to contradict or queftion it. He that 
will impartially furvey the nations of the 
world, will find fo much of their religions, 
governments and manners, brought in and 
continued amongft them by thefe means, that 
he will have but little reverence for the prac- 
tices which are in ufe and credit amongft 
men ; and will have reafon to think, that 
the woods and forefts, where the irrational 
untaught inhabitants keep right by following 
nature, are fitter to give us rules, than cities 
and palaces, where thofe that call themfelves 
civil and rational, go out of their way, by 
the authority of example. If precedents are 
fufficient to eftabliih a rule in this cafe, our 
author might have found in holy writ chil- 
dren facrinced by their parents, and this 


Of Government. 67 

amongft the people of God themielves : the 
Pfalmijl tells us, Pfal. cvi. 38. They fed in- 
nocent bloody even the blood of their fins and of 
their daughters, whom they facrificed unto the idols 
of Canaan. But God judged not of this by 
our author's rule, nor allowed of the autho- 
rity of practice againft his righteous law; but 
as it follows there, the land was polluted with 
blood ; therefore was the wrath of the Lord 
kindled againjl his people, infomuch that he 
abhorred his own inheritance. The killing of 
their children, though it were fafhionable, 
was charged on them as innocent blood, and 
fo had in the account of God the guilt of 
murder, as the offering them to idols had 
the guilt of idolatry. 

§.59. Be it then, as Sir Robert fays, that 
anciently it was ufual for men to fell a?id 
cafirate their children, Obfervations, 155. Let 
it be, that they expofed them; add to it, if 
you pleale, for this is ftill greater power, that 
they begat them for their tables, to fat and 
eat them : if this proves a right to do fo, 
we may, by the fame argument, juftify adul- 
tery, inceft and fodomy, for there are ex- 
amples of thefe too, both ancient and mo- 
dern ; fins, which I fuppofe have their prin- 
cipal aggravation from this, that they crofs 
the main intention of nature, which willeth 
the increafe of mankind, and the conti- 
nuation of the fpecies in the higheft per- 
fection, and the diftinclion of families, with 
F 2 the 

68 Of Government. 

the fecurity of the marriage bed, as neceflfary 

§. 60. In confirmation of this natural au- 
thority of the father, our author brings a 
lame proof from the politive command of 
God in fcripture : his words are, To confirm 
the natural right of regal power, we find in 
the Decalogue, that the law which enjoins obe- 
dience to kings, is delivered in the terms, Honour 
thy father, p. 23. Whereas ?nany confefs, that 
government only in the abflracl, is the ordinance 
of God, they are not able to prove any fuch 
ordinance hi the fcripture, but only in the fa- 
therly power ; and therefore we find the com- 
mandment, that enjoins obedience to fuperiors, 
given in the terms, Honour thy father ; Jo that 
not only the power and right of government, 
but the form of the power governing, and the 
perfon having the power, are all the ordinances 
of God. The firjl father had not only fimply 
power, but power monarchical, as he was father 
immediately from God, Obfervations, 254. To 
the fame purpofe, the fame law is cited by 
our author in fevera] other places, and juft 
after the fame fafhion ; that is, and mother, 
as apochryphal words, are always left out ; a 
great argument of our author's ingenuity, 
and the goodnefs of his caufe, which required 
in its defender zeal to a degree of warmth, 
able to warp the facred rule of the word of 
God, to make it comply with his prefent 
occalion , a way of proceeding not unufual 


Of Government. 69 

to thofe, who embrace not truths becaufe 
reafon and revelation offer them, but efpoufe 
tenets and parties for ends different from 
truth, and then refolve at any rate to defend 
them ; and fo do with the words and fenfe 
of authors, they would fit to their purpofe, 
juft as Procrufles did with his guefts, lop or 
ftretch them, as may beffc fit them to the 
fize of their notions : and they always prove 
like thofe fo ferved, deformed, lame, and 

§. 61. For had our author fet down this 
command without garbling, as God gave it, 
and joined mother to father, every reader 
would have feen, that it had made directly 
againft him ; and that it was fo far from 
eftablifhing the monarchical power of the fa- 
ther, that it fet up the ?nother equal with 
him, and enjoined nothing but what was due 
in common, to both father and mother : for 
that is the conftant tenor of the fcripture, 
Honour thy father and thy mother, Exod. xx. He 
that fmiteth his father or mother, fall furely 
be put to death, xxi. 15. He that curfeth his 
father or mother, fiall furely be put to death, 
ver. ij. Repeated Lev. xx. 9. and by our 
Saviour, Matth. xv. 4. Te Jljall fear every 
man his mother and his father, Lev. xix. 3. 
If a man have a rebellious fon, which will not 
obey the voice of his father, or the voice of 
his mother -, then fall his father and his mother 
lay hold on him, and fay, This our fon is ftubr- 
F 3 born 

jo Of Government. 

bom and rebellious, he will not obey our voice, 
Deut. xxi. 1 8, 19, 20, 21. Curfed be be that 
fettcth light by his father or his mother, xxviii. 16. 
My fon, hear the injlruciions of thy father, and 
forfake not the law of thy mother, are the 
words of Solomon, a king who was not ig- 
norant of what belonged to him as a father 
or a king ; and yet he joins father and mo~ 
ther together, in all the inftructions he gives 
children quite thro' his book of Proverbs. 
Woe unto him, that fay eth unto his father, What 
begettefl thou, or to the woman, What hajl thou 
brought forth? Ifa. xi. ver. 10. In thee have 
they Jet light by father or mother, Ezek. xxviii. 
2. And it Jhall come topafs, that when anyJJ:all 
yet prophefy, then his father and his mother 
that begat him, jhall fay unto him, Thou fhalt 
not live, and his father and his mother that 
begat him, floall thrufl him through when he 
prophe/ieth, Zech. xiii. 3. Here not the father 
only, but the father and mother jointly, had 
power in this cafe of life and death. Thus 
ran the law of the Old Teftament, and in 
the New they are likewife joined, in the 
obedience of their children, Eph. vi. 1. The 
rule is, Children, obey your parents ; and I do 
not remember, that I any where read, Chil- 
dren, obey your father, and no more : the fcrip- 
ture joins mother too in that homage, which 
is due from children; and had there been 
tny text, where the honour or obedience of 
children had been directed to the father alone, 


Of Government. ji 

it is not likely that our author, who pretends 
to build all upon fcripture, would have omit- 
ted it : nay, the fcripture makes the autho- 
rity of father and mother, in refpect of thofe 
they have begot, fo equal, that in fome 
places it neglects even the priority of order, 
which is thought due to the father, and the 
mother is put firfl, as Lev. xix. 3. from which 
fo conftantly joining father and mother to- 
gether, as is found quite through the fcrip- 
ture, we may conclude that the honour they 
have a title to from their children, is one 
common right belonging fo equally to them 
both, that neither can claim it wholly, nei- 
ther can be excluded. 

§. 62. One would wonder then how our 
author infers from the 5th commandment, 
that all power was originally in the father ; 
how he finds monarchical power of govern- 
ment fettled and fixed by the commandment. 
Honour thy father and thy mother. If all the 
honour due by the commandment, be it what 
it will, be the only right of the father, be- 
caufe he, as our author fays, has thefovereignty 
over the woman, as being the nobler and priii- 
cipler agent in generation, why did God after- 
wards all along join the mother with him, to 
fhare in his honour ? can the father, by this 
fovereignty of his, difcharge the child from 
paying this honour to his mother I The fcrip- 
ture gave no fuch licence to the Jews, and 
yet there were often breaches wide enough , 
F 4 betwixt 

yz Of Government. 

betwixt hufoand and wife, even to divorce 
and feparation : and, I think, no body will 
fay a child may with-hold honour from his 
mother, or, as the fcripture terms it, fet light 
by her, though his father mould command 
him to do fo ; no more than the mother 
could difpenfe with him for neglecting to 
honour his father : whereby it is plain, that 
this command of God gives the father no 
fovereignty, no fupremacy. 

§.63. I agree with our author that the 
title to this honour is veiled in the parents 
by nature, and is a right which accrues to 
them by their having begotten their chil- 
dren, and God by many pofitive declarations 
has confirmed it to them : I alio allow our 
author's rule, that in grants and gifts, that 
have their original from God a?id nature, as the 
power of the father, (let me add and mother, 
for whom God hath joined together, let no 
man put afunder) no inferior power of men can 
limit, nor make any law of prefcription againjl 
them, Obfervations, 158. fo that the mother 
having, by this law of God, a right to honour 
from her children, which is not fubject to 
the will of her hufband, we fee this abfolute 
monarchical power of the jather can neither 
be founded on it, nor confift with it ; and 
he has a power very far from monarchical, 
very far from that abfolutenefs our author 
contends for, when another has over his fub- 
jecfcs the fame power he hath, and by the 


Of Government. 73 

fame title : and therefore he cannot forbear 
faying himfelf that he cannot fee how any 
mans children can be free from fubjeBion to 
their parent s^ p. 12. which, in common fpeech, 
I think, figniftes mother as well as father, or 
if parents here lignifies only father, it is the 
firft time I ever yet knew it to do fo, and 
by fuch an ufe of words one may fay any 

§. 64. By our author's doctrine, the fa- 
ther having abfolute jurifdiction over his 
children, has alfo the fame over their ilfue ; 
and the confequence is good, were it true, 
that the father had fuch a power : and yet I 
afk our author whether the grandfather, by 
his fovereignty, could difcharge the grand- 
child from paying to his father the honour 
due to him by the 5th commandment. If 
the grandfather hath, by right of fatherhood, 
fole fovereign power in him, and that obe- 
dience which is due to the fupreme magi- 
strate, be commanded in thefe words, Honour 
thy father, it is certain the grandfather might 
difpenfe with the grandfon's honouring his 
father, which fince it is evident in common 
fenfe he cannot, it follows from hence, that 
Honour thy father and mother, cannot mean an 
abfolute fubjeclion to a fovereign power, but 
fomething elfe. The right therefore which 
parents have by nature, and which is con- 
firmed to them by the 5th commandment, 
cannot be that political dominion, which our' 


74 ^ F CjOVERNME N T. 

author would derive from it: for that being 
in every civil fociety Supreme fomewhere, can 
difcharge any Subject from any political obe- 
dience to any one of his fellow Subjects. But 
what law of the magistrate can give a child 
liberty, not to honour his father and mother? 
It is an eternal law, annexed purely to the 
relation of parents and children, and fo con- 
tains nothing of the magistrate's power in it, 
nor is Subjected to it. 

§.65. Our author fays, God hath given 
to a father a right or liberty to alien his pozver 
over his children to any other, Obfervations, 
155. I doubt whether he can alien wholly 
the right of honour that is due from them : 
but be that as it will, this I am fure, he 
cannot alien, and retain the fame power. If 
therefore the magistrate's fovereignty be, as 
our author would have it, nothing hut the 
authority of a fupr erne father, p. 23. it is 
unavoidable, that if the magistrate hath all 
this paternal right, as he muSt have it father- 
hood be the fountain of all authority ; then 
the fubjects, though fathers, can have no 
power over their children, no right to ho- 
nour from them : for it cannot be all in 
another's hands, and a part remain with the 
parents. So that, according to our author's 
own doctrine, Honour thy J at her and mother 
cannot poffibly be understood of political fub- 
jection and obedience; Since the laws both 
in the Old and New TeStament, that com- 

Of Government. 75 

mancled children to honour and obey their 
parents ; were given to fuch, whofe fathers 
were under civil government, and fellow 
fubjecls with them in political focieties ; and 
to have bid them honour and obey their . pa- 
rents, in our author's fenfe, had been to bid 
them be fubjecls to thofe who had no title 
to it; the right to obedience from fubjects, 
being all veiled in another; and inftead of 
teaching obedience, this had been to foment 
fedition, by fetting up powers that were not. 
If therefore this command, Honour thy fa~ 
ther and mother, concern political dominion, 
it directly overthrows our author's monarchy; 
iince it being to be paid by every child to 
his father, even in fociety, every father muffc 
neceifarily have political dominion, and there 
will be as many fovereigns as there are fa- 
thers : befides that the mother too hath her 
title, which deftroys the fovereignty of one 
fupreme monarch. But \£ Honour thy father 
and mother mean fomething diftinct from 
political power, as neceffarily it muft, it is 
befides our author's buiinefs, and ferves 
nothing to his purpofe. 

§.66. The law that enjoins obedience to kings 
is delivered, fays our author, in the terms, 
Honour thy father, as if all power were ori- 
ginally in the father, Obfervations, 254 : and 
that law is alio delivered, fay I, in the terms, 
Honour thy mother, as if all power were ori- 
ginally in the mother. I appeal whether 


y6 Of Government. 

the argument be not as good on one fide as 
the other, father and mother being joined 
all along in the Old and New Teftament 
where-ever honour or obedience is injoined 
children. Again our author tells us, Obferr 
vations, 254. that this command, Honour thy 
father, gives the right to govern, and makes the 
form, of government monarchical. To which I 
aniwer, that if by Honour thy father be meant 
obedience to the political power of the ma- 
giftrate, it concerns not any duty we owe to 
our natural fathers, who are fubjects ; be- 
caufe they, by our author's doctrine, are 
diverted of all that power, it being placed 
wholly in the prince, and fo being equally 
fubjedts and flaves with their children, can 
have no right, by that title, to any fuch honour 
or obedience, as contains in it political fub- 
jeclion : if Honour thy father and mother 
iignifies the duty we owe our natural parents, 
as by our Saviour's interpretation, Matth. xv. 
4. and all the other mentioned places, it is 
plain it does, then it cannot concern poli- 
tical obedience, but a duty that is owing to 
peribns, who have no title to fovereignty, 
nor any political authority as magiftrates 
over fubjects. For the perfon of a private 
father, and a title to obedience, due to the 
iupreme magiftrate, are things inconfiftent -, 
and therefore this command, which muft 
neceffarily comprehend the peribns of our 
natural fathers, muft. mean a duty we owe 

1 them 

Of Government. 77 

them diilincT: from our obedience to the 
magiftrate, and from which the moft abfolute 
power of princes cannot abfolve us. What 
this duty is, we (hall in its due place examine. 
§. 67. And thus we have at laft got thro* 
all, that in our author looks like an argument 
for that abfolute unlimited /over eignty defcribed, 
feci:. 8. which he fuppofes in Adam; fo that 
mankind ever fince have been all born Jlaves, 
without any title to freedom. But if crea- 
tion, which gave nothing but a being, made 
not Adam prince of his pojlerity : if Adam, 
Gen. i. 28. was not conftituted lord of man- 
kind, nor had a private dominion given him 
exclufive of his children, but only a right 
and power over the earth, and inferiour crea- 
tures in common with the children of men ; 
if alfo Gen. iii. 16. God gave not any poli* 
tical power to Adam over his wife and chil- 
dren, but only fubjected Eve to Adam, as a 
punimment, or foretold the fubjection of the 
weaker fex, in the ordering the common 
concernments of their families, but gave not 
thereby to Adam % as to the hufband, power 
of life and death, which neceilarily belongs 
to the magiftrate : if fathers by begetting 
their children acquire no fuch power ove 
them ; and if the command, Honour thy fa? 
ther and mother^ give it not, but only en- 
joins a duty owing to parents equally, whe- 
ther fubjecls or not, and to the mother as 
well as the father -, if all this be 10, as I , 


j% Of Government. 

think, by what has been faid, is very evi- 
dent j then man has a natural freedom, not- 
withftanding all our author confidently fays 
to the contrary ; fince all that ihare in the 
fame common nature, faculties and powers, 
are in nature equal, and ought to partake in 
the fame common rights and privileges, till 
the manifefl appointment of God, who is 
Lord over all, bleffed for ever, can be pro- 
duced to fhew any particular perfon's fu- 
premacy ; or a man's own confent fubjects 
him to a fuperiour. This is fo plain, that 
our author confeffes, that Sir John Hayward, 
Blackwood and Barclay, the great vindicators of 
the right of kings, could not deny it, but admit 
ivith one confent the natural liberty and equality 
of mankind, for a truth unquestionable. And 
our author hath been fo far from producing 
any thing, that may make good his great 
poiition, that Adam was abfolute monarch, and 
fo men are not naturally free, that even his 
own proofs make againft him ; fo that, to 
ufe his own way of arguing, the firji erroneous 
-principle failing, the whole fabric of this vajl 
engine of abfolute power and tyranny drops 
down of it f If and there needs no more to 
be faid in anfwer to all that he builds upon 
fo falfe and frail a foundation. 

§. 68. But to fave others the pains, were 
there any need, he is not fparing himfelf to 
fhew, by his own contradictions, the weak- 
nefs of his own do&rine. Adams abfolute 


Of Government. 79 

and fole dominion is that, which he is every 
where full of, and all along builds on, and 
yet he tells us, p. 12. that as Adam was lord 
of his children, fo his children under him had a 
command and power over .their own children. 
The unlimited and undivided fovereignty of 
Adams fatherhood, by our author's computa- 
tion, flood but a little while, only during 
the firft generation, but as foon as he had 
grand-children, Sir Robert could give but a 
very ill account of it. Adam, as father of 
his children, faith he, hath an abfolute, un- 
limited royal power over them, and by virtue 
thereof over thofe that they begot, and fo to all 
generations ; and yet his children, viz. Cain 
and Seth, have a paternal power over their 
children at the fame time ; fo that they are 
at the fame time abfolute lords, and yet vaffhls 
and /laves ; Adam has all the authority, as 
grand-father of the people, and they have a 
part of it as fathers of a part of them : he 
is abfolute over them and their pofteriry, by 
having begotten them, and yet they are ab- 
folute over their children bv the fame title. 
No, fays our author, Adams children under 
him had power over their own children, but 
ft ill with fubordination to the jirft parent. A 
good diftinclion that founds well, and it is 
pity it iigniries nothing, nor can be reconciled 
with our author's words. I readily grant, 
that fuppofing Adams abfolute power over his 
pofterity, any of his children might have 
1 frona 

8o Op Government. 

from him a delegated, and fo a fubordinate 
power over a part, or all the reft : but that 
cannot be the power our author fpeaks of 
here j it is not a power by grant and com- 
miflion, but the natural paternal power he 
fuppofes a father to have over his children. 
For 1 . he fays, As Adam was lord of his 
children, fo his children under him had a power 
over their own children : they were then lords 
over their own children after the fame man- 
ner, and by the fame title, that Adam was, 
i. e. by right of generation, by right of fa- 
therhood. 2. It is plain he means the natural 
power of fathers, becaufe he limits it to be 
only over their own children ; a delegated 
power has no fuch limitation, as only over 
their own children, it might be over others, 
as well as their own children. 3. If it were 
a delegated power, it muff appear in fcrip- 
ture ; but there is no ground in fcripture to 
affirm, that Adam's children had any other 
power over theirs, than what they naturally 
had as fathers. 

§. 69. But that he means here paternal 
power, and no other, is paft doubt, from the 
inference he makes in thefe words imme- 
diately following, I fee not then how the chil- 
dren of Adam, or of any man elfe y can be free 
from fubjeclion to their parents. Whereby it 
appears that the power on one fide, and the 
fubjeclion on the other, our author here fpeaks 
of, is that natural power and fubjeclion be- 

Of Government. Si 

tween parents and children : for that which 
every man's children owed, could be no 
other; and that our author always affirms to 
be abfolute and unlimited. This natural power 
of parents over their children, Adam had 
over his pofteritv, fays our author ; and this 
power of parents over their children, his chil- 
dren had over theirs in his life-time, fays our 
author alfo ; fo that Adam, by a natural right 
of father, had an abfolute unlimited power 
over all his pofterity, and at the fame time 
his children had by the fame right abfolute 
unlimited power over theirs. Here then are 
two abfolute unlimited powers exifting to- 
gether, which I would have any body re- 
concile one to another, or to common fenfe. 
For the faho he has put in of fubordination, 
makes it more abfurd : to have one abfolute, 
unlimited, nay unlimitable power in fubordi- 
nation to another, is fo manifeft a contra- 
diction, that nothing can be more. Adam 
is abfolute prince with the ufilimited authority 
of fatherhood over all his pofterity-, all his 
pofterity are then abfolutely his fubje&s ; and, 
as our author fays, his (laves, children, and 
grand-children, are equally in this ftate of 
fubjection and flavery; and yet, fays our 
author, the children of Adam have paternal, 
i. e. abfolute unlimited power over their own 
children: Which in plain Engliflo is, they 
are (laves and abfolute princes at the fame 
time, and in the fame government ; and one 

G part 

82 Of Government. 

part of the fubje&s have an abfolute unlimited 
power over the other by the natural right 
of parentage. 

§. jo. If any one will fuppofe, in favour 
of our author, that he here meant, that 
parents, who are in fubjeclion themfelves to 
the abfolute authority of their father, have 
yet fome power over their children ; I confefs 
he is fomething nearer the truth : but he 
will not at all hereby help our author : for 
he no where fpeaking of the paternal power, 
but as an abfolute unlimited authority, can- 
not be fuppofed to underftand any thing elfe 
here, unlefs he himfelf had limited it, and 
mewed how far it reached. And that he 
means here paternal authority in that large 
extent, is plain from the immediate follow- 
ing words ; This fubjeclion of children being, 
fays he, the foundation of all regal authority, 
p. 12. the fubjeclion then that in the former 
line, he fays, every mail is in to his parents, 
and confequently what Adams grand-children 
were in to their parents, was that which was 
the fountain of all regal authority, i. e. ac- 
cording to our author, abfolute unlimitable 
authority. And thus Adams children had regal 
authority over their children, whilft they 
themfelves were fubjetts to their father, and 
fell ow-fubj eels with their children. But let 
him mean as he pleafes, it is plain he allows 
Adam's children to have paternal power, p. 12. 
as alfo all other fathers to have paternal 'power 


Of Government. 8$ 

over their childre?i, Obfervations, 156. From 
whence one of thefe two things will neceffarily 
follow, that either Adam's children.- sven in 
his life-time, had, and fo all other fathers 
have, as he phrafes it, p. 12. by right of 
fatherhood, royal authority over their children, 
or elfe, that Adam, by right of fatherhood, 
had not royal authority. For it cannot be but 
that paternal power does, or does not, give 
royal authority to them that have it : if it 
does not, then Adam could not be fovereign 
by this title, nor any body elfe ; and then 
there is an end of all our author's politics at 
Once : if it does give royal authority, then 
every one that has paternal power has royal 
authority, and then, by our author's patriarchal 
government, there will be as many kings as 
there are fathers. 

§.71. And thus what a monarchy he hath 
fet up, let him and his difciples confider. 
Princes certainly will have great reafon to 
thank him for thefe new politics, which fet 
up as many abfolute kings in every country 
as there are fathers of children. And yet 
who can blame our author for it, it lying 
unavoidably in the way of one difcourfing 
upon our author's principles ? For having 
placed an abfolute power in fathers by right of 
begetting, he could not eafily refolve how 
much of this power belonged to a fon over the 
children he had begotten ; and fo it fell out ■ 
to be a very hard matter to give all the power, 

G 2 as 

84 Of Government. 

as he does, to Adatn, and yet allow a part 
in his life-time to his children, when they 
were parents, and which he knew not well 
how to deny them. This makes him fo 
doubtful in his expreffions, and fb uncertain 
where to place this abfolute natural power, 
which he calls fatherhood* Sometimes Ada??; 
alone has it all, as p. 13. Obfervations, 244, 
245. & Pref. 

Sometimes parents have it, which word 
fcarce fignifies the father alone, p. i2, 19. 
• Sometimes children during their fathers 
life-time, as p. 12. 

Sometimes fathers of fa?7?ilics i as p. 78, 
and 79. 

Sometimes fathers indefinitely, Obferva- 
tions, 155. 

Sometimes the heir to Adam, Obfervations, 

Sometimes the pofierity of Adam, 244, 246. 

Sometimes pri?ne fathers, all fins or grand- 
children of Noah, Obfervations, 244. 

Sometimes the e/de/i parents, p. 12. 

Sometimes all kings, p. 19. 

Sometimes ail that have fupreme power, 
Obfervations, 245. 

Sometimes heirs to thofe firjl progenitors, 
who were at frjl the natural pare??ts of the 
whole people, p. 19. 

Sometimes an elective king, p. 23. 

Sometimes thofe, whether a few or a mul- 
titude, that govern the com?no?i- wealth, p. 23. 


Of Government. 8$ 

Sometimes he that can catch it, an ufurp- 
er, p. 23. Obfervations, 155. 

§.72. Thus-this new nothing, that is to carry 
with it all power, authority, and government; 
this fatherhood, which is to defign the perfon, 
and eftablifh the throne of monarchs, whom 
the people are to obey, may, according to Sir 
Robert, come into any hands, any how, and 
fo by his politics give to democracy royal 
authority, and make an ufurper a lawful 
prince. And if it will do all thefe fine feats, 
much good do our author and all his follow- 
ers with their omnipotent fatherhood, which 
can ferve for nothing but to unfettle and de- 
ftroy all the lawful governments in the world, 
and to eftabliih in their room diforder, tyran-r 
ny, and ufurpation. 


Of Fatherhood and Property conjidered together 
as Fountains of Sovereignty. 

%. y^. TN the foregoing chapters we have 
X feen what Jdam's monarchy was, 
in our author's opinion, and upon what 
titles he founded it. The foundations which 
he lays the chief ftrefs on, as thofefrom which 
he thinks he may beft derive monarchical 
power to future princes, are two, viz. Father- 
G 3 hood 

86 Of Government. 

hood and property : and therefore the way he 
propofes to remove the abfurdities and incon- 
veniencies of the doclrine of natural freedom, is, 
to maintain the natural and private dominion of 
Adam, Obfervations, 222. Conformable here- 
unto, he tells us, the grounds and principles of 
government necefjarily depend upon the original of 
property, Obfervations, 108. 'The fubjeflion of 
children to their parents is the fountain of all regal. 
authority ', p. 12. And all power on earth is ei- 
ther derived or ufurpedjrom the fatherly power, 
there being no other original to be found of 
any power whaffocver, Obfervations, 158. I 
will not fland here to examine how it can be 
faid without a contradiction, that the firf 
grounds and principles of gbverftmeni necefjarily 
dcpendiipon the original of property ', and yet, that 
there is no other original of any power whatfocver, 
but that of the father : it being hard to under- 
stand how there can be no other original but 
fatherhood, and yet that the grounds and prin- 
ciples of government depend upon the original 
of property ; property and fatherhood being as 
far different as lord of a manor and father 
of children. Nor do I fee how they will ei- 
ther of them agree with what our author iays, 
Obfervations, 244.. of God's fentence againfl 
Eve, Gen. iii. 16. That it is the original grant 
cf government : fo that if that were the original, 
government had not its original, by our author's confeiTion, either from property or fa- 
therhood ' 3 

Of Government. Sy 

therhood ; and this text, which he brings as a 
proof of Adam's power over Eve, neceflarily 
contradicts what he fays of the fatherhood, 
that it is the file fountain of all power : for if 
Adam had any fuch regal power over Eve, as 
our author contends for, it muft be by fome 
other title than that of begetting. 

§. 74. But I leave him to reconcile thefe 
contradictions, as well as many others, which 
may plentifully be found in him by any one, 
who will but read him with a little attention 5 
and mall come now to confider, how thefe 
two originals of government, Adam's natural 
and private dominion, will con lift, and ferve to 
make out and eftablim the titles of fucceeding 
monarchs, who, as oar author obliges them, 
muft all derive their power from thefe foun- 
tains. Let us then fuppofe Adam made, by 
Gods donation, lord and fole proprietor of the 
whole earth, in as large and ample a manner, 
as Sir Robert could wifli ; let us fuppofe him 
alfo, by right of fatherhood, abfolute ruler over 
his children with an unlimited fupremacy; I 
afk then, upon Adam's death what becomes of 
both his natural and private dominion ? and I 
doubt not it will be anfwered, that they de- 
fcended to his next heir, as our author tells us 
in fevr.ral places. But this way, it is plain, 
cannot poffibly convey both his natural and 
private dominion to the fame perfon : for 
mould we allow, that all the property, all 
the eftate of the father, ought to defcend to 
G 4 the 

88 Of Government. 

the eldcft fori, (which will need fome proof 
to eftabliih it) and To he has by that title 
all the private dominion of the father, yet the 
father's natural dominion, the paternal power 
cannot defcend to him by inheritance : for 
it being a right that accrues to a man only by 
begetting, no man can have this natural do-r 
minion over any one he does not beget ; un- 
3efs it can be fuppofed, that a man can have 
a right to any thing, without doing that upon 
which that right is folely founded : for if a 
father by begetting, and no other title, has na- 
tural dominion over his children, he that does 
not beget them cannot have this natural 
dominion over them ; and therefore be it true 
or falfe, that our author fays, Obfervations, 1 56. 
That every man that is born, by his very birth 
becomes afubjefl to him that begets him, this ne- 
cefTariiy follows, viz. That a man by his birth 
cannot become a fubjed: to his brother, who 
did not beget him ; unlefs it can be fuppofed 
that a man by the very fame title can come 
to be under the natural and abfolute dominion 
of two different men at once ; or it be fenfe 
to fay, that a man by birth is under the na- 
tural dominion of his father, only becaufe he 
begat him, and a man by birth alio is under 
the natural dominion of his eldeft brother, 
though he did not beget him. 

§. j 5. If then the private dominion of Adam, 
i. e. his property in the creatures, defcend- 
ed at his death all entirely to his eldeft fon, 


Of Government. 89 

his heir ; (for, if it did not, there is prefently 
an end of all Sir Robert's monarchy) and his 
natural dominion, the dominion a father has 
over his children by begetting them, belonged 
immediately, upon Adam's deceafe, equally 
to all his fons who had children, by the 
fame title their father had it, the fove- 
reignty founded upon property, and the fo- 
vereignty founded upon fatherhood, come 
to be divided ; fince Cain, as heir, had 
that of property alone ; Setb, and the other 
fons, that o£ fatherhood equally with him. This 
is the beft can be made of our author's 
doctrine, and of the two titles of fovereignty 
he fets up in Adam : one of them will either 
{ignify nothing ; or, if they both mull ftand, 
they can ferve only to confound the rights 
of princes, and diforder government in his 
pofterity : for by building upon two titles to 
dominion, which cannot defcend together, 
and which he allows may be feparated, (for 
he yields that Adams children had their dijiincl 
territories by right of private dominion, Ob- 
fervations, 2 10. p. 40.) he makes it perpetually 
a doubt upon his principles where the Sove- 
reignty is, or to whom we owe our obe- 
dience, {met fatherhood and property are di- 
stinct titles, and began prefently upon Adam's 
death to be in diftinct perfons. And which 
then was to give way to the other ? 

§.76. Let us take the account of it, as he 
himfelf gives it us. He tells us out otGrotius, 


90 Of Government. 

That Adams children by donation) ajjignation, 
erjbme kind of cefjicn before he was dead, had 
their dijiincT: territories by right of private domi- 
nion-, Abel had his flocks and paf hires for them ; 
Oain had his fields for com, and the land of Nod, 
-where he built him a city, Obfervations, 210. 
Here it is obvious to demand, which ofthefe 
two after Adams death was fovereign ? Cain, 
fays our author, p. 19. By what title ? As 
heir ; for heirs to progefiitors, who were natural 
parents of their people, are not only lords of their 
own children, but alfo of their brethren, fays 
our author, p. 19. What was Cain heir to ? 
Not the entire porTeffion?, not all that which 
Adam had private dominion in ; for our author 
allows that Abel, by a title derived from his 
father, had bis dijlinfl territory for pafture 
by right of private dominion. What then Abel 
had by private dominion, was exempt from 
Cains dominion : for he could not have 
private dominion over that which was under 
the private dominion of another ; and there- 
fore his fovereignty over his brother is gone 
w T ith this private dominion, and fo there are 
prefently two fovereigns, and his imaginary 
title of fatherhood is out of doors, and Cain is 
no prince over his brother : or elfe, if Cain 
retain his fovereignty over Abel, notwithftand- 
in<r his private dominion, it will follow, that 
the firfl grounds and principles of gov eminent 
have nothing to do with property, whatever 
1 our 

Of Government. 91 

our author fays to the contrary. It is true, 
Abel did not outlive his father Adam ; but that 
makes nothing to the argument, which 
will hold good againft Sir Robert in Abel's 
iffue, or in Seth, or any of the poflerity of 
Adam, not defcended from Cain. 

§. 77. The fame inconvenience he runs in- 
to about the three fons of Noah, who, as he 
fays, p. 13. bad the whole world divided among ft 
them by their father. I aik then, in which 
of the three mail we find the eflablijhment of 
regal power after Noah's death ? If in all three, 
as our author there feems to fay ; then it will 
follow, that regal power is founded in property 
of land, and follows private dominion, and not 
in paternal power, or natural dominion ; and Co 
there is an end of paternal power as the foun- 
tain of regal authority, and the fo-much-mag- 
hihed fatherhood quite vani(hes. If the regal 
power defcended to Sbem as eldeft, and heir 
to his father, then Noah's divifwn of the world, 
by lot to his fom, or his ten years jailing about 
the Mediterranean to appoint each fon his part, 
which our author tells of, p. 15. was labour 
loft ; his divifion of the world to them, was 
to ill, or to no purpofe : for his grant to 
Cham and Japbet was little worth, if Sbem, 
notwithflanding this grant, as foon as Noah 
was dead, was to be lord over them. Or, if 
this grant of private dominion to them, over 
their affigned territories, were good, here were 
fet up two diftind forts of power, not fubordi- 


92 Of G o v e r n m e n t. 

nate one to the other, with all thofe inconve- 
niences which he mutters up again It the power 
of the people, Obfervations, 158. which I mall 
let down in his own words, only changing 
property for people. All power on earth is either 
derived or ufurpedfrom the fatherly power, there 
being no other original to be found of any power 
whatfoever : for if there JJjould be granted two 
forts of power, without any fubordination of one 
to the other, they would be in perpetual firifc 
which fiould be fupreme, for two fupremes can- 
not agree : if the fatherly power be fupreme, then 
the power grounded on private dominion mufi 
be fubordinate, and depeiid on it ; and if the 
power grounded on property be fupreme, then 
the fatherly power muftfubinit to it, and camiot 
be exercifed without the licence of the proprietors, 
which muf quite dcflroy the frame and courfe of 
nature. This is his own arguing againfr. two 
diftinct independent powers, which I have 
fet down in his own words., only putting 
power rifing from property, for power of the 
people ; and when he has anfwered what he 
himfelf has urged here againfl two difrinct 
powers, we (hall be better able to fee how, 
with any tolerable fenfe, he can derive all re- 
gal authority^/re/tf the natural and private do- 
minion of Adam, from fatherhood and property 
top-ether, which are diftinct titles, that do not 
always meet in the fame perfon ; and it is 
plain, by his own confefiion, prefently fer 


Of Government. 93 

parated as Toon both as Adams and Noah's 
death made way for fucceffion : though our 
author frequently in his writings jumbles 
them together, and omits not to make ufe of 
either, where he thinks ijt will found bell: to 
his purpofe. But the abfurdities of this will 
more fully appear in the next chapter, where 
we fhall examine the ways of conveyance of 
the fovereignty of Adam, to princes that were 
to reign after him. 


Of the Conveyance of Adam'j fovereign Mo- 
narchical Power. 

§. 78. O I R Robert, having not been very 
O happy in any proof he brings for 
the fovereignty of Adam, is not much more 
fortunate in conveying it to future princes, 
who, if his politics be true, muft all derive 
their titles from that firft monarch. The 
ways he has affigned, as they lie fcattered up 
and down in his writings, 1 will fet down in 
his own words : in his preface he tells us> 
That Adam being monarch of the whole worlds 
none of his pojlerity had any right to poffefs any 
thing, but by his grant or pennijjion, or by 
fucceffion from him. Here he makes two ways 
of conveyance of any thing Adam ftood pof- 
feffed of; and thofe are grants or fucceffion. 
Again he fays, All kings either are, or are to 


94 Of Govern men t. 

be reputed, the next heirs to thofejirji progenitors, 
who were at Jirji the natural parents of the 
whole people, p. 19. There cannot be any mul- 
titude of men whatsoever, but that in it, con- 
fdered by it/elf, there is one man amongjl 
them, that in nature hath a right to be the 
king of all the rejl, as being the next heir to 
Adam, Obfervations, 253. Here in thefe 
places inheritance is the only way he allows 
of conveying monarchical power to princes. 
In other places he tells us, Obfervations, 
255. All power on earth is either derived or 
nfurped from the fatherly power, Obfervations, 
158. AH kings that now are, or ever were, are 
or were either fathers of their people, or heirs of 
fuch fathers, or nfurpers of the right of fuch 
fathers, Obfervations, 253. And here he 
makes inheritance or ufurpation the only ways 
whereby kings come by this original power : 
but yet he tells us, This fatherly empire, as 
it was of itfelf hereditary, fo it was alienable 
by patent, and feizable by an ufurper, Obfer- 
vations, 190. So then here inheritance, grant, 
or ufurpation, will convey it. And lad of 
all, which is moft admirable, he tells us, 
p. ioo. It fills not which way kings come 
by their power, whether by eleclion, donation, 
fuccejjicn, or ly any other ?neans ; for it is fill 
the manner of the governmerit byfupreme power, 
that makes them properly kings, and not the 
means of obtaining their crowns. Which I 
think is a full aniwer to all his whole hypo- 

Of Government. 95 

thefis and difcourfe about Adams royal au- 
thority, as the fountain from which all 
princes were to derive theirs : and he might 
have fpared the trouble of fpeaking fo much 
as he does, up and down, of heirs and inheri- 
tance, if to make any one properly a king, 
needs no more but governing by fnpreme power, 
and it matters not by what means he came 
by it. 

§.79. By this notable way, our author 
may make Oliver as properly king, as any one 
elfe he could think of: and had he had the 
happinefs to live under Majfanellos govern- 
ment, he could not by this his own rule have 
forborn to have done homage to him, with 
O king live for ever, fince the manner of his 
government by fupreme power, made him 
properly king, who was but the day before 
properly a fifherman. And if Don Quixote 
had taught his fquire to govern with fupreme 
authority, our author no doubt could have 
made a moft loyal fubject in Sancho Panchds 
ijland ; and he muft needs have defer ved fome 
preferment in fuch governments, fince I think* 
he is the firfl: politician, who, pretending to 
fettle government upon its true baiis, and to 
eftablim the thrones of lawful princes, ever 
told the world, That he was properly a king, 
whofe t?ia?i?ier of government was by fupreme 
power, by what means foever he obtained it ; 
which in plain Englijh is to fay, that regal 
and fupreme power is properly and truly his, 

who ' 

96 Of Government. 

who can by any means feize upon it ; and 
if this be to be properly a king, I wonder 
how he came to think of, or where he will 
find, an u fur per. 

§. 80. This is fo ftrange a doctrine, that 
the furprife of it hath made me pafs by, 
without their due reflection, the contra- 
dictions he runs into, by making fometimes 
inheritance alone, fometimes only grant or 
inheritance, fometimes only inheritance or 
•ufurpation, fometimes all thefe three, and at 
laft election, or any other means, added to them, 
the ways whereby Adam's royal authority, that 
is, his right to fupreme rule, could be con- 
veyed down to future kings and governors, 
fo as to give them a title to the obedience 
and fubjection of the people. But thefe con- 
tradictions lie fo open, that the very reading 
of our author's own words will difcover 
them to any ordinary understanding ; and 
though what I have quoted out of him (with 
abundance more of the fame Strain and 
coherence, which might be found in him) 
might well excufe me from any farther 
trouble in this argument, yet having pro- 
pofed to mvfelf, to examine the main parts 
of his doctrine, I (hall a little more parti- 
cularly conilder how inheritance, grant, ufur- 
pation or election, can any way make out 
government in the world upon his principles; 
or derive to any one a right of empire, from 
this regal authority of Ada?::, had it been 


Of Government. ay 

never fo well proved, that he had been ab- 
folute monarch, and lord of the whole 

C II A P. IX. 

Of 'Monarchy \ by Inheritance from Adam* 

§. 8 1. HP Hough it be never fo plain, that 
there ought to be government 
in the world, nay, mould all men be of our 
author's mind, that divine appointment had 
ordained it to be monarchical ; yet, fince men 
cannot obey any thing, that cannot com- 
mand ; and ideas of government in the 
fancy, though never fo perfect, though never 
fo right, cannot give laws, nor prefcribe 
rules to the actions of men ; it would be of 
no behoof for the fettling of order, and 
eftablimment of government in its exercife 
and ufe amongft men, unlefs there were a 
way alfo taught how to know the perfcn, to 
whom it belonged to have this power, and 
exercife this dominion over others. It is in 
vain then to talk of fubjeclion and obedience 
without telling us whom we are to obey: 
for were I never fo fully perfuaded that there 
ought to be magistracy and rule in the 
world ; yet I am never the lefs at liberty 
Hill, till it appears who is the perfon that 
hath right to my obedience ; fince, if there 
be no marks to know him by, and diftin- 
guifTi him that hath right to rule from 

H other 

98 Of Government.' 

other men, it may be myfelf, as well as 
any other. And therefore, though fubmiffion 
to government be every one's duty, yet fince 
Chat fignifies nothing but fubmitting to the 
direction and laws of fuch men as have 
authority to command, it is not enough to 
make a man a fubject, to convince him that 
there is regal power in the world ; but there 
mud. be ways of defigning, and knowing the 
perfon to whom this regal power of right 
belongs : and a man can never be obliged 
in confcience to fubmit to any power, unlefs 
he can be fatisfied who is the perfon who 
has a right to exercife that power over him. 
If this were not fo, there would be no di- 
stinction between pirates and lawful princes; 
he that has force is without any more ado to 
be obeyed, and crowns and fcepters would 
become the inheritance only of violence and 
rapine. Men too might as often and as in- 
nocently change their governors, as they do 
their phyiicians, if the perfon cannot be 
known who has a right to direct me, and 
whofe prefcriptions I am bound to follow. 
To fettle therefore men's confciences, under 
an obligation to obedience, it is neceffary 
that they know not only, that there is a 
power fomewhere in the world, but the 
perfon who by right is veiled with this power 
over them. 

§. 82. How fuccefsful our author has 
been in his attempts, to fet up a monarchical 
cbfohte power in Adam, the reader may judge 


Of Government. 99 

by what has been already faid; but were that 
abfolute monarchy as clear as our author would 
deiire it, as I prefume it is the contrary, yet 
it could be of no ufe to the government of 
mankind now in the world, unlefs he alfo 
make out thefe two things. 

Fir ft, That this power of Adam was not to 
end with him, but was upon his deceafe con- 
veyed intire to fome other perfon, and fo on 
to pofterity. 

Secondly y That the princes and rulers now 
on earth are poffefled of this power of Adam, 
by a right way of conveyance derived to 

§. 83. If the firf! of thefe fail, the power 
of Adam, were it never fo great, never fo 
certain, will lignify nothing to the prefent 
government and focieties in the world ; but 
we muft feek out fome other original of 
power for the government of politys than 
this of Adam, or elfe there will be none at 
all in the world. If the latter fail, it will 
deftroy the authority of the prefent gover- 
nors, and abfolve the people from fubjeclion 
to them, fince they, having no better a claim 
than others to that power, which is alone the 
fountain of all authority, can have no title 
to rule over them. 

§. 84. Our author, having fancied an ab- 
folute fovereignty in Adam, mentions feveral 
ways of its conveyance to princes, that were 
to be his fuccefTors ; but that which he chiefly 

H 2 infifts 

ioo Of Government. 

infifts on, is that of inheritance, which occurs 
fo often in his feveral difcourfes; and I having 
in the foregoing chapter quoted feveral of 
thefe paffages, I mall not need here again 
to repeat them. This fovereignty he erects, 
as has been faid, upon a double foundation, 
'viz. that of property ', and that of fatherhood. 
One was the right he was fuppofed to have 
in all creatures, a right to poffefs the earth 
with the beafts, and other inferior ranks of 
things in it, for his private ufe, exclufive of 
all other men. The other was the right he 
was fuppofed to have, to rule and govern 
men, all the reft of mankind. 

§.85. In both thefe rights, there being 
fuppofed an exclufion of all other men, it 
mull be upon fome reafon peculiar to Adam, 
that they muft both be founded. 

That of his property our author fuppofes 
to arife from God's immediate donation, Gen. 
i. 28. and that of fatherhood from the act of 
begetting : now in all inheritance, if the heir 
fucceed not to the reafon upon which his 
father's right was founded, he cannot fucceed 
to the right which followeth from it. For 
example, Adam had a right of property in 
the creatures upon the donation and grant of 
God almighty, who was lord and proprietor 
of them all; let this be fo as our author tells 
us, yet upon his death his heir can have no 
title to them, no fuch right of property in 
them, unlefs the fame reafon, viz. God's 


Of Government. ioi 

donation, vetted a right in the heir too : for 
if Adam could have had no property in, nor 
ufe of the creatures, without this pofitive 
donation from God, and this donation were 
only perfonally to Ada?n, his heir could have 
no right by it ; but upon his death it muft 
revert to God, the lord and owner again ; for 
pofitive grants give no title farther than the 
exprefs words convey it, and by which only 
it is held. And thus, if as our author him- 
felf contends, that donation. Gen. i. 28. were 
made only to Adam perfonally, his heir could 
not fucceed to his property in the creatures ; 
and if it were a donation to any but Adam, 
let it be fhewn, that it was to his heir in 
our author's fenfe, /. e. to one of his children, 
exclufive of all the reft. 

§. 86. But not to follow our author too 
far out of the way, the plain of the cafe is 
this. God having made man, and planted 
in him, as in all other animals, a ltxong delire 
of felf-prefervation ; and furnHhed the world 
with things fit for food and raiment, and 
other neceffaries of life, fubfervient to his 
defign, that man mould live and abide for 
fome time upon the face of the earth, and not 
that fo curious and* wonderful a piece of 
workmanfhip, by his own negligence, or 
want of neceffaries, mould periih again, pre- 
fently after a few moments continuance ; 
God, 1 fay, having made man and the world 
thus, fpoke to him, (that is) directed him 

H 3 b 7 

102 Of Government. 

by his fenfes and reafon, as he did the in- 
ferior animals by their fenfe and inftinct, 
which were ferviceable for his fubfiftence, 
and given him as the means of his prefer- 
nation. And therefore I doubt not, but be- 
fore thefe words were pronounced, i. Gen. 
28, 29. (if they mud be understood literally 
to have been fpoken) and without any fuch 
verbal donation, man had a right to an ufe of 
the creatures, by the will and grant of God : 
for the delire, ftrong defire of preferving his 
life and being, having been planted in him 
as a principle of adtion by God himfelf, rea- 
fon, which was the voice of God in him, could 
not but teach him and aflure him, that pur- 
suing that natural inclination he had to 
preferve his being, he followed the will of 
his maker, and therefore had a right to make 
ufe of thofe creatures, which by his reafon 
or fenfes he could difcover would be fer- 
viceable thereunto. And thus man's property 
in the creatures was founded upon the right 
he had to make ufe of thofe things that 
were neceffary or ufeful to his being. 

§. 87. This being the reafon and founda- 
tion of Adam's property, gave the* fame title, 
on the fame ground, to all his children, not 
only after his death, but in his life-time : fo 
that here was no privilege of his heir above 
his other children, which could exclude them 
from an equal right to the ufe of the inferior 
creatures, for the comfortable prefervation 


Of Government. 103 

of their beings, which is all the property man 
hath in them -, and fo Adam's, fovereignty 
built on property, or, as our author calls it, 
private dominion, comes to nothing. Every 
man had a right to the creatures, by the 
fame title Adam had, viz. by the right every 
one had to take care of, and provide for their 
fubfiftence : and thus men had a right in 
common, Adam's children in common with 
him. But if any one had began, and made 
himfelf a property in any particular thing, 
(which how he, or any one elfe, could do, 
{hall be fhewn in another place) that thing, 
that pofleffion, if he difpofed not otherwife 
of it by his pofitive grant, defcended natu- 
rally to his children, and they had a right to 
fucceed to it, and poffefs it. 

§. 88. It might reafonably be afked here, 
how come children by this right of porTeffing, 
before any other, the properties of their pa- 
rents upon their deceafe ? for it being per- 
fonally the parents, when they die, without 
actually transferring their right to another, 
why does it not return again to the common 
flock of mankind ? It will perhaps be an- 
fwered, 'that common confent hath difpofed 
of it to their children. Common practice, 
we fee indeed, does fo difpoie of it ; but we 
cannot fay, that it is the common confent 
of mankind ; for that hath never been afked, 
nor actually given -, and if common tacit 
confent hath eflablifhed it, it would make ■ 

H 4 but 

j 04 Of Government. 

but a pofitive, and not a natural right of 
children to inherit the goods of their pa- 
rents : but where the pra&ice is univerfal, 
it is reafonable to think the caufe is natural. 
The ground then I think to be this. The 
firft and ilrongeft deiire God planted in men, 
and wrought into the very principles of their 
nature, being that of felf-prefervation, that 
is the foundation of a right to the creatures 
for the particular fupport and uie of each 
individual perfon himlelf. But, next to this, 
God planted in men a flrcng defire alfo of 
propagating their kind, and continuing them- 
felves in their polierity ; and this gives chil- 
dren a title to fhare in the property of their 
parents, and a right to inherit their pof- 
feilions. Men are not proprietors of what 
they have, meerly for themielves ; their chil- 
dren have a title to part of it, and have their 
kind of right joined with their parents, in 
the pofTefTion which comes to be wholly 
their's, when death, having put an end to 
their parents ufe of it, hath taken them from 
their pofTeffions , and this we call inheri- 
tance : men being by a like obligation bound 
to preferve what they have begotten, as to 
preferve themfelves, their hTue come to have 
a right in the goods they are pofTefTed of. 
That children have fuch a right, is plain 
from the laws of God ; and that men are 
convinced that children have fuch a right, 
is evident from the law of the land ; both 


Of Government. 105 

which laws require parents to provide for 
their children. 

§. 89. For children being by the courfe of 
nature, born weak, and unable to provide for 
themfelves, they have by the appointment of 
God himfelf, who hath thus ordered the 
courfe c.<n ^hjr e, a right to be nouriihed 
and main tain^Jw their parents; nay, a right 
not only to a bare fubfiftence, but to the 
conveniencies and comforts of life, as far as 
the conditions of their parents can afford it. 
Hence it domes, that when their parents leave 
the world, and fo the care due to their chil- 
dren ceafes, the effects of it are to extend 
as far as poffibly they can, and the pro- 
vifions they have made in their life-time, 
are underftood to be intended, as nature 
requires they mould, for their children, whom, 
after themfelves, they are bound to provide 
for : though the dying parents, by exprefs 
words, declare nothing about them, nature 
appoints the defcent of their property to their 
children, who thus come to have a title, and 
natural right of inheritance to their fathers 
goods, which the reft of mankind cannot 
pretend to. 

§. 90. Were it not for this right of being 
nouriihed and maintained by their parents, 
which God and nature has given to children, 
and obliged parents to as a duty, it would 
be reafonable, that the father mould inherit 
the eltate of his fon, and be preferred in the 


106 Of Government. 

inheritance before his grand-child : for to the 
grand-father there is due a long fcore of care 
and expences laid out upon the breeding and 
education of his fon, which one would think 
in juftice ought to be paid. But that having 
been done in obedience to the fame law, 
whereby he received nourishment and edu- 
cation from his own parents ; this fcore of 
education, received from a man's, father, is 
paid by taking care, and providing for his 
own children ; is paid, I fay, as much as is 
required of payment by alteration of pro- 
perty, unlefs prefent necefiity of the parents 
require a return of goods for their necefTary 
fupport and fubfiftence : for we are not now 
fpeaking of that reverence, acknowledgment, 
refpedx and honour, that is always due from 
children to their parents ; but of poiTeffions 
and commodities of life valuable by money. 
But though it be incumbent on parents to 
bring up and provide for their children, yet 
this debt to their children does not quite 
cancel the fcore due to their parents ; but 
only is made by nature preferable to it : for 
the debt a man owes his father takes place, 
and gives the father a right to inherit the 
fon's goods, where, for want of ifTue, the 
right of children doth not exclude that title. 
And therefore a man having a right to be 
maintained by his children, where he needs 
it; and to enjoy alfo the comforts of life 
from them, when the necefTary provifion due 


Of Government. 107 

to them and their children will afford it ; if 
his fon die without iflue, the father has a 
right in nature to poflefs his goods, and in- 
herit his eftate, (whatever the municipal laws 
of fome countries may abfurdly direct other- 
wife;) and fo again his children and their iiTue 
from him ; or, for want of fuch, his father and 
his ilTue. But where no fuch are to be found, 
i. e. no kindred, there we fee the poiTefiions 
of a private man revert to the community, 
and fo in politic focieties come into the 
hands of the public magistrate ; but in the 
ftate of nature become again perfectly com- 
mon, no body having a right to inherit them : 
nor can any one have a property in them, 
otherwife than in other things common by 
nature ; of which I mail fpeak in its due 

§.91. I have been the larger, in mewing 
upon what ground children have a right to 
fucceed to the poffeffion of their fathers 
properties, not only becaufe by it, it will 
appear, that if Adam had a property (a titular, 
inrigniflcant, ufelefs property ; for it could be 
no better, for he was bound to nourim and 
maintain his children and pofterity out of 
it) in the whole earth and its product, yet 
all his children coming to have, by the law 
of nature, and right of inheritance, a joint 
title* and right of property in it after his 
death, \t could convey no right of fovereignty 
to any one of his pofterity over the reft : , 


108 Of Government. 

fince every one having a right of inheritance 
to his portion, they might enjoy their inhe- 
ritance, or any part of it in common, or 
mare it, or fome parts of it, by divifion, as it 
heft liked them. But no one could pretend 
to the whole inheritance, or any fovereignty 
fuppofed to accompany it ; fince a right of 
inheritance gave every one of the reft, as 
well as any one, a title to fhare in the goods 
of his father. Not only upon this account, 
I fay, have I been fo particular in examining 
the reafon of children's inheriting the pro- 
perty of their fathers, but alio becaule it 
will give us farther light in the inheritance 
of rule and power, which in countries where 
their particular municipal laws give the 
whole poireflion of land entirely to the firii- 
born, and defcent of power has gone fo to 
men by this cuftom, fome have been apt to 
be deceived into an opinion, that there was a 
natural or divine right of primogeniture, to 
both ejlate and power ; and that the inheri- 
tance of both rule over men, and property in 
things, fprang from the fame original, and 
were to defcend by the fame rules. 

§.92. Property, whofe original is from the 
right a man has to ufe any of the inferior 
creatures, for the fubfiftence and comfort of 
his life, is for the benefit and fole advantage 
of the proprietor, fo that he may even deftroy 
the thing, that he has property in by his ufe 
of it, where need requires : but government 
5 being 

Of Government. 109 

being for the prefervation of every man's 
right and property, by preferving him from 
the violence or injury of others, is for the 
good of the governed : for the magistrate's 
iword being for a terror to -evil doers, and by 
that terror to inforce men to obferve the 
pofitive laws of the fociety, made confor- 
mable to the laws of nature, for the public 
good, i. e. the good of every particular 
member of that fociety, as far as by common 
rules it can be provided for -, the fword is 
not given the magistrate for his own good 

§. 93. Children therefore, as has been 
fhewed, by the dependance they have on 
their parents for fubfiftence, have a right of 
inheritance to their fathers property, as that 
which belongs to them for their proper good 
and behoof, and therefore are fitly termed 
goods, wherein the firu>born has not a fols 
or peculiar right by any law of God and, 
nature, the younger children having an equal 
title with him, founded on that right they all 
have to maintenance, fupport, and comfort 
from their parents, and on nothing elfe. 
But government being for the benefit of the 
governed, and not the fole advantage of the 
governors, (but only for their's with the reft, 
as they make a part of that politic body, 
each of whofe parts and members are taken 
care of, and directed in its peculiar functions 
for the good of the whole, by the laws of 


no Of Government. 

fociety) cannot be inherited by the fame 
title, that children have to the goods of their 
father. The right a fon has to be maintained 
and provided with the necefiaries and con- 
veniences of life out of his father's flock, gives* 
him a right to fucceed to his father's pro- 
perty for his own good ; but this can give 
him no right to fucceed alfo to the rule, 
which his father had over other men. All 
that a child has right to claim from his fa- 
ther is nourifhment and education, and the 
things nature furnifhesfor the fupport of life: 
but he has no right to demand rule or domi- 
nion from him: he can fubfift and receive 
from him the portion of good things, and 
advantages of education naturally due to him, 
without e??ipire and dominion. That (if his 
father hath any) was veiled in him, for the 
good and behoof of others : and therefore 
the fon cannot claim or inherit it by a title, 
which is founded wholly on his own private 
good and advantage. 

§. 94. We muft know how the firft ruler, 
from whom any one claims, came by his 
authority, upon what ground any one has 
empire, what his title is to it, before we 
can know who has a right to fucceed him in 
it, and inherit it from him : if the agree- 
ment and confent of men firft gave a fcepter 
into any one's hand, or put a crown on his 
head, that alfo muft direct its defcent and 
conveyance; for the fame authority, that 


Of Government. hi 

made the firft a lawful ruler, mud make the 
fecond too, and fo give right of fucceffion : 
in this cafe inheritance, or primogeniture, can 
in its felf have no right, no pretence to it, 
any farther than that confent, which efta- 
blifhed the form of the government, hath fo 
fettled the fucceffion. And thus we fee, the 
fucceffion of crowns, in feveral countries, places 
it on different heads, and he comes by right 
of fucceffion to be a prince in one place, 
who would be a fubject in another. 

§. 95. If God, by his politive grant and re- 
vealed declaration, firft. gave rule and dominion 
to any man, he that will claim by that title, 
muft have the fame pofitive grant of God 
for his fucceffion : for if that has not direct- 
ed the courfe of its defcent and conveyance 
down to others, no body can fucceed to this 
title of the firft ruler. Children have no right 
of inheritance to this; and primogeniture can 
lay no claim to it, unlefs God, the author of 
this conftitution, hath fo ordained it. Thus 
we fee, the pretentions of Saul's family, who 
received his crown from the immediate ap- 
pointment of God, ended with his reign ; 
and David, by the fame title that Saul reign- 
ed, viz. God's appointment, fucceeded in 
his throne, to theexclufion of Jonathan, and 
all pretentions of paternal inheritance : and 
if Solomon had a right to fucceed his father, it 
muft be by fome other title, than that of pri- 
mogeniture. A cadet, or lifter's fon, muft 


H2 Of Government. 

have the preference in fucceffion, if he has 
the fame title the firft lawful prince had : 
and in dominion that has its foundation only 
in the pofitive appointment of God himfelf, 
Benjamin, the youngeft, muft have the inheri- 
tance of the crown, if God fo direct, as well 
as one of that tribe had the firft poffeffion. 

§.96. If paternal right, the ad: of begetting, 
eive a man rule and dominion, inheritance or 
primogeniture can give no title : for he that 
cannot fucceed to his father's title, which was 
begetting, cannot fucceed to that power over 
his brethren, which his father had by pater- 
nal right over them. But of this I {hall 
have occafion to fay more in another place. 
This is plain in the mean time, that any go- 
vernment, whether fuppofed to be at firft 
founded in paternal right, confent of the people, 
or the pofitive appoint7nent of God himfelf, which 
can fuperfede either of the other, and fo begin 
a new government upon a new foundation; I 
fay, any government began upon either of 
thefe, can by right of fucceffion come to thofe 
only, who have the title of him they fuc- 
ceed to : power founded on contracl can de- 
fcend only to him, who has right by that 
contract : power founded on begetting, he 
only can have that begets ; and power found- 
ed on the pofitive grant or donation of God, 
he only can have by right of fucceffion, to 
whom that grant directs it. 


Of Government* 113 

• §. 97. From what I have faid, I think this is 
cleaa* that a right to the uie of the creatures, 
being founded originally in the right a man 
has to fubiift and enjoy the conveniencies of 
life ; and the natural right- children have to 
inherit the goods of their parents, being found- 
ed in the right they have to the fame fubfift- 
ence and commodities of life, out of the flock 
of their parents, who are therefore taught by- 
natural love and tendernefs to provide for 
them, as a part of themfelves ; and all this 
being only for the good of the proprietor, or 
heir ; it can be no reafon for children's inhe- 
riting of rule and dominion* which has ano- 
ther original and a different end. Nor can 
primogeniture have any pretence to a right 
of folely inheriting either property or power, 
as we mall, in its due place, fee more fully. 
It is enough to have mewed here, that Adams 
property, or private dominion, could not convey 
any fovereignty or rule to his heir, who not 
having a right to inherit all his father's pof- 
feffions, could not thereby come to have any 
fovereignty over his brethren : and therefore, 
if any fovereignty en account of his property 
had been veiled in Adam, which in truth there 
was not, yet it would have died with him. 

§.98. As Adam's fovereignty, if, by vir- 
tue of being proprietor of the world, he had 
any authority over men, could not have been 
inherited by any of his children over the reft, 
becaufe they had the fame title to divide the 
inheritance, and every one had a right to a 

I portion 

ii4 Of Government. 

portion of his father's pofleffions ; fo nei- 
ther could Adam's fovereignty by right of fa- 
therhood, if any fuch he had, defcend to any 
one of his children : for it being, in our au- 
thor's account, a right acquired by begetting 
to rule over thofe he had begotten, it was 
not a power pofiible to be inherited, becaufe 
the right being confequent to, and built on, 
an act perfectly perfonal, made that power fo 
too, and impoffible to be inherited : for 
paternal power, being a natural right rifing 
only from the relation of father and fon, is 
as impcflible to be inherited as the relation 
itfelf -, and a man may pretend as well to in- 
herit the conjugal power the hufband, whofe 
heir he is, had over his wife, as he can to 
inherit the paternal power of a father over 
his children : for the power of the hufband 
being founded on contract, and the power 
of the father on begetting, he may as well 
inherit the power obtained by the conjugal 
contract, which was only perfonal, as he 
may the power obtained by begetting, which 
could reach no farther than the perfonofthe 
begetter, unlefs begetting can be a title to 
power in him that does not beget. 

§. 99. Which makes it a reafonable queflion 
to afk, whether Adam, dying before Eve, his 
heir, (fuppofe Cain or SethJ fhould have by 
right of inheriting Adam's fatherhood, fovereign 
power over Eve his mother : for Adam's father- 
hood being nothing but a right he had to govern 
his children, becaufe he begot them, he that 


Of Government. 115 

inherits Adam's fatherhood, inherits nothing, 
even in our author's fenfe, but the right Adam 
had to govern his children, becaufe he begot 
them: fo that the monarchy of the heir would 
not have taken in Eve; or if it did, it being 
nothing but the. fatherhood of Adam defcended 
by inheritance, the heir muft have right to 
govern Eve, becaufe Adam begot her -, for 
fatherhood is nothing elfe. 

§. 100. Perhaps it will be faid with our 
author, that a man can alien his power over 
his child ; and what may be transferred by 
compact, may be porTefTed by inheritance. 
I anfwer, a father cannot alien the power he 
has over his child : he may perhaps to fome 
degrees forfeit it, but cannot transfer it ; and 
if any other man acquire it, it is not by the 
father's grant, but by fome act of his own. 
For example, a father, unnaturally carelefs 
of his child, fells or gives him to another 
man ; and he again expofes him ; a third 
man rinding him, breeds up, cherifhes, and 
provides for him as his own : I think in this 
cafe, no body will doubt, but that the great- 
efl part of filial duty and fubjection was here 
owing, and to be paid to this fofter-father ; 
and if any thing could be demanded from 
the child, by either of the other, it could be 
only due to his natural father, who perhaps 
might have forfeited his right to much of 
that duty comprehended in the command, , 
Honour your parents, but could transfer none 
of it to another. He that purchafed, and 
I 2 neglected 

u6 Of Government. 

neglected the child, got by his purchafe and 
grant of the father, no title to duty or ho- 
nour from the child ; but only he acquired it, 
who by his own authority, performing the 
office and care of a father, to the forlorn and 
periming infant, made himfelf, by paternal 
care, a title to proportionable degrees of pater- 
nal power. This will be more eafily admit- 
ted upon confideration of the nature of pater- 
nal power, for which I refer my reader to- 
the lecond book. 

§. 101. To return to the argument in 
hand j this is evident, That paternal power 
arifing only from begetting-, for in that our 
author places it alone, can neither be tranf- 
f erred nor inherited : and he that does not 
beget, can no more have paternal power, 
which arifes from thence, than he can have 
a right to any thing, who performs not the 
condition, to which only it is annexed. If 
one mould afk, by what law has a father 
power over his children ? it will be an- 
fwered, no doubt, by the law of nature, 
which gives fuch a power over them, to 
him that begets them. If one mould afk 
likewife, by what law does our author's 
heir come by a right to inherit ? I think it 
would be anfwered, by the law of nature too : 
for I find not that. our author brings one 
word of fcripture to prove the right of fuch 
an heir he fpeaks of. Why then the law of 
nature gives fathers paternal power over their 
children, becaufe they did beget them; and 


Of Government. 117 

the fame law of nature gives the fame paternal 
power to the heir over his brethren, who 
did not beget them : whence it follows, that 
either the father has not. his paternal power 
by begetting, or eKe that the heir has it not 
at all -, for it is hard to underftand how the 
law of nature, which is the law of reafon, 
can give the paternal power to the father over 
his children, for the only reafon of begetting ; 
and to the firfl-born over his brethren with- 
out this only reafon, i. e. for no reafon at all : 
and if the elded, by the law of nature, can 
inherit this paternal power, without the only 
reafon that gives a title to it, lb may the 
youngeft as well as he, and a ftranger as 
well as either ; for where there is no reafon 
for any one, as there is not, but for him that 
begets, all have an equal title. I am fure 
our author offers no reafon ; and when any 
body does, we {hall fee whether it will hold 
or no. 

§.102. In the mean time it is as good fenfe 
to fay, that by the law of nature a man has 
right to inherit the property of another, be- 
caufe he is of kin to him, and is known to 
be of his blood ; and therefore, by the fame 
law of nature, an utter ftranger to his blood 
has right to inherit his eftate ; as to fay that, 
by the law of nature, he that begets them 
has paternal power over his children, and 
therefore, by the law of nature, the heir that 
begets them not, has this paternal power 
over them -, or fuppofing the law of the land 

I 3 gave 

1 1 8 Of Government. 

gave abfolute power over their children, to 
fuch only who nurfed them, and fed their 
children themfelves, could any body pretend, 
that this law gave any one, who did no fuch 
thing, abfolute power over thofe, who were 
not his children ? 

§. 103. When therefore it can be mewed, 
that conjugal power can belong to him that 
is not an hufband, it will alio I believe be 
■proved, that our author's paternal power, ac- 
quired by begetting, may be inherited by a 
fon -, and that a brother, as heir to his fa- 
ther's power, may have paternal power over 
his brethren, and by the fame rule conjugal 
power too : but till then, I think we may 
reft fatisfied, that the paternal power of Adam, 
this fovereign authority of fatherhood, were 
there any fuch, could not defcend to, nor be 
inherited by, his next heir. Fatherly power, I 
eafily grant our author, if it will do him any 
good, can never be loft, becaufe it will be as 
long in the world as there are fathers : but 
none of them will have Adam's paternal power, 
or derive their's from him ; but every one will 
have his own, by the fame title Adam had 
his, viz. by begetting, but not by inheritance, 
or fucceffion, no more than hufbands have 
their conjugal power by inheritance from 
Adam. And thus we fee, as Ada?n had no 
fuch property, no fuch paternal power, as gave 
him fovereign jurifdiclion over mankind ; Co 
likewife his fovereignty built upon either of 
thefe titles, if he had any fuch, could not 


Of Government. 119 

have del ended to his heir, but muft have 
ended with him. Adam therefore, as has 
been proved, being neither monarch, nor 
his imaginary monarchy hereditable, the 
power which is now in the world, is not 
that wiiich was Adam's, fince all that Adam 
could have upon our author's grounds, either 
of property or fatherhood, neceffariiy died 
with him, and could not be conveyed to 
pofterity by inheritance. In the next place 
we will confider, whether Adam had any 
fuch heir, to inherit his power, as our au- 
thor talks of. 


Of the Heir to Adam'i Monarchical Potter. 

§. 104. /^UR author tells us, Obfer- 
V^/ vations, 253. That it is a truth 
undeniable, that there cannot be any multitude 
of men whatfoever, either great or Jmall, tho 
gathered together from the fever al corners and 
r emote jl regions of the world, but that in the 
fame multitude, confidered by its felf, there is 
one man amongH them, that in nature hath a 
right to be king of all the reft, as being the next 
heir to Adam, and all the other fubje els to him .• 
every man by nature is a king or a fubje 51. 
And again, p. 20. i/'Adam him felf were fill 
living, and now ready to die, it is certain that 
there is one man, and but one in the world, who 
is next heir. Let this multitude of men be, if 

I 4 our 

120 Of Government. 

our author pleafes, all the princes upon the 
earth, there will then be, by our author's 
rule, one amongjl them, that in nature hath a 
right to be king of all the reft, as being the 
right heir to Adam ; an excellent way to 
eflablifh the thrones of princes, and fettle 
the obedience of their fubjecls, by fetting 
up an hundred, or perhaps a thoufand titles 
(if there be fo many princes in the world) 
againfl any king now reigning, each as good, 
upon our author's grounds, as his who wears 
the crown. If this right of heir carry any 
w r eight with it, if it be the ordinance of God, as 
our author feems to tells us, Obfcrvations, 244. 
mufl: not all be fubject to it, from the higheft 
to the loweft ? Can thofe who wear the name 
of princes, without having the right of being 
heirs to Adam, demand obedience from their 
fubjecls by this title, and not be bound to 
pay it by the fame lav/ ? Either governments 
in the world are not to be claimed, and held 
by this title of Adam's heir ; and then the 
ftarting of it is to no purpofe, the being or not 
being Adams heir fignilies nothing as to the 
title of dominion : or if it really be, as our 
author fays, the true title to government and 
fovereignty, the firfr. thing to be done, is to 
find out this true heir of Adam, feat him in 
his throne, and then all the kings and princes 
of the world ought to come and refign up 
their crowns and fcepters to him, as things 
that belong no more to them, than to any 
of their fubjecls. 

§• 105, 

Of Government. 121 

§. 105. For either this right in nature, of 
Adams heir, to be king over all the race of 
men, (for all together they make one mul- 
titude) is a right not neceflary to the making 
of a lawful king, and fo there may be lawful 
kings without it, and then kings titles and 
power depend not on it -, or elfe all the kings 
in the world but one are not lawful kings, 
and fo have no ri^ht to obedience : either 
this title of heir to Adam is that whereby 
kings hold their crowns, and have a right 
to fubjedtion from their fubjecls, and then 
one only can have it, and the reft being 
fubjefts can require no obedience from other 
men, who are but their fellow fubjects ; or 
elfe it is not the title whereby kings rule, 
and have a right to obedience from their 
fubjects, and then kings are kings without 
it, and this dream of the natural fovereignty 
of Adanis heir is of no ufe to obedience and 
government : for if kings have a right to 
dominion, and the obedience of their fub- 
jects, who are not, nor can poffibly be, heirs 
to Adam, what ufe is there of fuch a title, 
when we are obliged to obey without it ? If 
kings, who are not heirs to Adam, have no 
right to fovereignty, we are all free, till our 
author, or any body for him, will mew us 
Adams right heir. If there be but one heir 
of Adam, there can be but one lawful king 
in the world, and no body in confcience can - 
be obliged to obedience till it be refolved 


122 Of Government. 

who that is ; for it may be any one, who is 
not known to be of a younger houfe, and 
all others have equal titles. If there be 
more than one heir of Adam, every one is 
his heir, and fo every one has regal power : 
for if two Ions can be heirs together, then 
all the fons are equally heirs, and fo all are 
heirs, being all fons, or fons fons of Adam. 
Betwixt thefe two the right of heir can- 
not ifand ; for by it either but one only 
man, or all men are kings. Take which 
you pleafe, it diffolves the bonds of govern- 
ment and obedience ; fince, if all men are 
heirs, they can owe obedience to no body ; 
if only one, no body can be obliged to pay 
obedience to him, till he be known, and his 
title made out. 

Who HEIR? 

§. 1 06. t a ^ HE great queftion which in 
all ages has diflurbed man- 
kind, and brought on them the greatefl part 
of thofe mifchiefs which have ruined cities, 
depopulated countries, and difordered the 
peace of the world, has been, not whether 
there be power in the world, nor whence it 
came, but who mould have it. The fettling 
of this point being of no fmaller moment 
than the fecurity of princes, and the peace 


Of Government. 123 

and welfare of their eftates and kingdoms, a 
reformer of politics, one would think, fhould 
lay this fure, and be very clear in it : for if 
this remain difputable, all the reft will be to 
very little purpofe ; and the ikill ufed in 
dreffing up power with all the fplendor and 
temptation abfolutenefs can add to it, without 
mewing who has a right to have it, will 
ferve only to give a greater edge to man's 
natural ambition, which of its felf is but too 
keen. What can this do but fet men on 
the more eagerly to fcramble, and fo lay a 
fure and lafting foundation of endlefs con- 
tention and diforder, inftead of that peace 
and tranquillity, which is the bufinefs of go- 
vernment, and the end of human fociety ? 

§. 107. This deiignation of the perfon our 
author is more than ordinary obliged to take 
care of, becaufe he, affirming that the af- 
Jignment of civil power is by divine iftjiitution, 
hath made the conveyance as well as the 
power itfelf facred : fo that no coniideration, 
no act or art of man, can divert it from that 
perfon, to whom, by this divine right, it is 
affigned ; no neceflity or contrivance can 
fubftitute another perfon in his room : for 
if the ajjignment of civil power be by divine 
injlitution, and Adams heir be he to whom 
it is thus affigned, as in the foregoing chapter 
our author tells us, it would be as much fa- 
crilege for any one to be king, who was not 
Adam's heir, as it would have been amongfl 
5 the 

124 Of Government. 

the Jews, for any one to have been priejl, who 
had not been of Aaron 's pofterity : for not 
only the priefthood in general being by divine in- 
flitution, but the ajfignment of it to the fole line 
and pofterity of Aaron, made it impoflible to 
be enjoyed or exercifed by any one, but thofe 
perfons who were the ofF-fpring of Aaron : 
whofe fucceffion therefore was carefully ob- 
ferved, and by that the perfons who had a 
right to the priefthood certainly known. 

§. 1 08. Let us fee then what care our 
author has taken, to make us know who is 
this heir, who by divine injlitution has a right 
to be king over all men. The firft account of 
him we meet with is, p. 12. in thefe words : 
'This fubjeclion of children, being the fountain 
of all regal authority, by the ordination of God 
bimfelf', it follows, that civil power, not only in 
general, is by divine injlitution, but even the 
alignment of it, fpecif catty to the eldejl parents. 
Matters of fuch coniequence as this is, mould 
be in plain words, as little liable, as might 
be, to doubt or equivocation ; and I think, 
if language be capable of expreffing any thing 
diftinctly and clearly, that of kindred, and 
the feveral degrees of nearnefs of blood, is 
one. It were therefore to be wifhed, that 
our author had ufed a little more intelligible 
expreflions here, that we might have better 
known, who it is, to whom the alignment of 
civil power is made by divine infiitution ; or at 
leaft would have told us what he meant by 

el def 

Of Government. 125 

eldejl parents : for I believe, if land had been 
affigned or granted to him, and the eldejl 
parents of his family, he would have thought 
it had needed an interpreter ; and it would 
fcarce have been known to whom next it 

§. 109. In propriety of fpeech, (and cer- 
tainly propriety of fpeech is neceifary in a 
difcourfe of this nature) eldejl parents iignifies 
either the eldeft men and women that have 
had children, or thofe who have longed: had 
iffue ; and then our author's affertion will 
be, that thofe fathers and mothers, who have 
been longeft in the world, or longed: fruitful, 
have by divine injiitution a right to civil power. 
If there be any abfurdity in this, our author 
mud anfwer for it : and if his meaning be 
different from my explication, he is to be 
blamed, that he would not fpeak it plainly. 
This I am fure, parents cannot fignify heirs 
male, nor eldejl parents an infant child : who 
yet may fometimes be the true heir, if there 
can be but one. And we are hereby flili as 
much at a lofs, who civil power belongs to, 
notwithstanding this ajjignment by divine in- 
stitution, as if there had been no fuch ajjign- 
ment at all, or our author had faid nothing 
of it. This of eldejl parents leaving us more 
in the dark, who by divine injiitution has a 
right to civil power, than thofe who never 
heard any thing at all of heir, or defcent, of 
which our author is fo full. And though the 


126 Of Government. 

chief matter of his writing be to teach obe- 
dience to thofe, who have a right to it, which 
he tells us is conveyed by defcent, yet who 
thofe are, to whom this right bj defcent 
belongs, he leaves, like the philofopners ftone 
in politics, out of the reach of any one ta 
difcover from his writings. 

§. 1 10. This obfcurity cannot be imputed 
to want of language in fo great a mailer of 
ftyle as Sir Robert is, when he is reiblved 
with himielf what he would fay : and there- 
fore, I fear, finding how hard it would be to 
fettle rules of defcent by divine inftitution, 
and how little it would be to his purpofe, or 
conduce to the clearing and eftablifhing the 
titles of princes, if fuch rules of defcent were 
fettled, he chofe rather to content himfelf 
with doubtful and general terms, which 
might make no ill found in mens ears, who 
Were willing to be pleafed with them, rather 
than offer any clear rules of defcent of this 
fatherhood of Adam, by which men's con- 
fciences might be fatisfied to whom it de- 
fcended, and know the perfons who had a 
right to regal power, and with it to their 

§. in. How elfe is it pofTible, that laying 
fo much ftrefs, as he does, upon defcent, and 
Adam's heir, next heir, true heir, he fhould 
never tell us what heir means, nor the way 
to know who the next or true heir is ? This, 
I do not remember, he does any where ex- 


Of Government. 127 

prefly handle ; but, where it comes in his 
way, very warily and doubtfully touches ; 
though it be fo neceflary, that without it all 
difcourfes of government and obedience upon 
his principles would be to no purpofe, and 

fatherly power, never fo well made out, will 
be of no ufe to any body. Hence he tells 
us, Obfervations, 244. That not only the con- 

Jlitution of power in general, but the limitation 
of it to one kind, (i. e.) monarchy, and thi 
determination of it to the individual perfon and 
line of Adam, are all three ordinances of God ; 
neither Eve nor her children coidd either limit 
Adam's power, or join others with him ; and w 
was given unto Adam was given in his perfon to 
his pojierity. Here again our author informs 
us, that the divine ordinance hath limited the 
defcent of Adams monarchical power. To 
whom ? To Adam's line and pojierity, fays our 
author. A notable limitation, a limitation to 
all mankind : for if our author can find any 
one amongft mankind, that is not of the 
line and pojierity of Adam, he may perhaps 
tell him, who this next heir of Adam is : 
but for us, I defpair how this limitation of 
Adam's empire to his line and poflerity will 
help us to find out one heir. This limitation 
indeed of our author will fave thofe the 
labour, who would look for him amongft 
the race of brutes, if any fuch there were ; 
but will very little contribute to the difcovery 
of one next heir amongft men, though it make 
a mort and eafy determination of the queftion 


128 Of Government. 

about the defcent of Adams regal power, by 
telling us, that the line and pojlerity of Adam 
is to have it, that is, in plain Engli/h, any 
one may have it, fince there is no per- 
fon living that hath not the title of being 
of the line and pojlerity of Adam ; and while- 
it keeps there, it keeps within our author's 
limitation by God's ordinance. Indeed, 
p. 19. he tells us, that Juch heirs are ?iot only 
cords of their own children, but of their brethren ; 
whereby, and by the words following, which 
we mail coniider anon, he feems to infinuate, 
that the eldefl fon is heir ; but he no where, 
that I know, fays it in direct words, but by 
the inftances of Cain and Jacob, that there 
follow, we may allow this to be fo far his 
opinion concerning heirs, that where there 
are divers children, the eldefl fon has the right 
to be heir. That primogeniture cannot give 
any title to paternal power, we have already 
fhewed. That a father may have a natural 
right to fome kind of power over his chil- 
dren, is eafily granted 3 but that an elder 
brother has fo over his brethren, remains to 
be proved : God or nature has not any where, 
that I know, placed fuch jurifdiction in the 
firft-born ; nor can reafon find any fuch na- 
tural fuperiority amongft brethren. The 
law of Mofes gave a double portion of the 
goods and pofTerTions to the eldefl:; but we 
find not any where that naturally, or by 
God's injiitution, fuperiority or dominion be- 
longed to him, and the inftances there brought 


Of Government. 129 

by our author are but ilender proofs of a 
right to civil power and dominion in the 
firft-born, and do rather (hew the contrary. 

§. 112. His words are in the forecited 
place : And therefore we find God told Cain of 
his brother Abel ; his defire fhall be fubjecl unto 
thee, and thou Jhalt rule over him. To which 
I anfwer, 

1 . Thefe words of God to Cain, are by 
many interpreters, with great reafon, under- 
stood in a quite different fenfe than what 
our author ufes them in. 

2. Whatever was meant by them, it could 
not be, that Cain, as elder, had a natural 
dominion over Abel; for the words are con- 
ditional, If thou dojl well \ and fo perfonal to 
Cain : and whatever was fignified by them, 
did depend on his carriage, and not follow his 
birth-right ; and therefore could by no 
means be an eftabliihtnent of dominion in 
the firit-born in general : for before this 
Abel had his diflincl territories by right of 
private dominion, as our author him/elf con- 
ferTes, Objervations, 210. which he could not 
have had to the prejudice of the heirs title, 
if by divine injlituiion, Cain as heir were to 
inherit all his father's dominion. 

3. If this were intended by God as the 
charter of primogeniture, and the grant of 
dominion to elder brothers in general as fuch, 
by right of inheritance, we might expect it - 
fhould have included all his brethren : for 

K we 

J30 Of Government.' 

we may well fuppofe, Adam, from whom the 
world was to be peopled, had by this time, 
that thefe were grown up to be men, more 
fons than thefe two : whereas Abel himfelf is 
not fo much as named -, and the words in 
the original can fcarce, with any good con- 
ftruction, be applied to him. 

4. It is too much to build a doctrine of 
fo mighty confequence upon fo doubtful and 
obfcure a place of fcripture, which may be 
well, nay better, underftood in a quite dif- 
ferent fenfe, and fo can be but an ill proof, 
being as doubtful as the thing to be proved 
by it ; efpecially when there is nothing elfe 
in fcripture or reafon to be found, that fa- 
vours or fupports it. 

§. 113. It follows, p. 19. Accordingly when 
Jacob bought his brother s birth-right > Ifaac 
blefj'ed him thus -, Be lord over thy brethren, and 
let the fons of thy mother bow before thee. 
Another inftance, I take it, brought by our 
author to evince dominion due to birth-right, 
and an admirable one it is : for it muft be 
no ordinary way of reafoning in a man, that 
is pleading for the natural power of kings, 
and againfr. all compact, to bring for proof 
of it, an example, where his own account of 
it founds all the right upon compact, and 
fettles empire in the younger brother, unlefs 
buying and felling be no compact ; for he 
tells us, when Jacob height his brother s birth- 
right. But paging by that, let us confider 


Of Government. 131 

the hiftory itfelf, with what ufe our author 
makes of it, and we fhall find thefe following 
miftakes about it. 

1 . That our author reports this, as if Ifaac 
had given 'Jacob this bleffing, immediately 
upon his purchafing the birth- right ; for he 
fays, when Jacob bought, lfaac blejfed him -, which 
is plainly otherwife in the fcripture : for it 
appears, there was a diflance of time be- 
tween, and if we will take the ftory in the 
order it lies, it muft be no fmall diflance $ 
all Ifaac s fojourning in Gerar, and tranf- 
a&ions with Abimelech, Gen. xxvi. coming 
between ; Rebecca being then beautiful, and 
confequently young ; but Ifaac, when he 
bleffed Jacob, was old and decrepit : and 
Efau alfo complains of Jacob, Gen. xxvii. 
36. that two times he had fupplanted him ; 
He took away my birth-right, fays he, and be- 
hold now he hath taken away my blejjing -, words, 
that I think fignify diflance of time and dif- 
ference of action. 

2. Another miflake of our author's is, that 
he fuppofes Ifaac gave Jacob the bleffing, and 
bid him be lord over his brethren, becaufe he 
had the birth-right-, for our author brings 
this example to prove, that he that has the 
birth-right, has thereby a right to be lord 
over his brethren. But it is alfo manifeft by 
the text, that Ifaac had no confideration of 
Jacob's having bought the birth-right ; for 
when he bleffed him, he confidered him not 

K 2 as 

1^2 Of Government. 

as Jacob, but took him for Efau. Nor did 
Efau underftand any fuch conne&ion between 
birth-right and the blejjing -, for he fays, He 
hath fupplanted me thefe two times, he took away 
my birth-right, and behold now he hath taken 
away my bleffmg: whereas had the blejjing, 
which was to be lord over his brethren, be- 
longed to the birth-right, Efau could not 
have complained of this fecond, as a cheat, 
Jacob having got nothing but what Efau had 
fold him, when he fold him his birth-right ; 
fo that it is plain, dominion, if thefe words 
fignify it, was not underftood to belong to 
the birth-right. 

§. 114. And that in thofe days of the 
patriarchs, dominion was not underftood to 
be the right of the heir, but only a greater 
portion of goods, is plain from Gen. xxi. 10. 
for Sarah, taking Ifaac to be heir, fays, Caft 
out this bondwoman and her fon, for the fori 
of this bondwoman fball not be heir with my 
fon : whereby could be meant nothing, but 
that he lhould not have a pretence to an 
equal (hare of his father's eilate after his 
death, but fhould have his portion prefently, 
and be gone. Accordingly we read, Gen. 
xxv. 5,6. That Abraham gave all that he had 
unto Ifaac, but unto the Jons of the concubines 
which Abraham had, Abraham gave gifts, and 
put them away from Ifaac his fon, while he 
yet lived. That is, Abraham having given 
portions to all his other fons, and fent them 


Of Government. 133 

away, that which he had referved, being the 
greateft part of his fubftance, Ifaac as heir 
pofTefTed after his death : but by being heir, 
he had no right to be lord, over his brethren ; 
for if he had, why fhould Sarah endeavour 
to rob him of one of his fubjecls, or leiTen 
the number of his JIaves, by deiiring to have 
IJhmael fent away ? 

§. 115. Thus, as under the law, the pri- 
vilege of birth-right was nothing but a double 
portion : fo we fee that before Mofes, in the 
patriarchs time, from whence our author 
pretends to take his model, there was no 
knowledge, no thought, that birth-right o-ave 
rule or empire, paternal or kingly authority, 
to any one over his brethren. If this be net 
plain enough in the ftory of Ifaac and Ijhnael, 
he that will look into 1 Chron. v. 12. may 
there read thefe words: Reuben was the fir ft- 
born ; but for a/much as he defied his father 's 
bed, his birth- right was given unto the fans of 
Jofepb, the fon of Ifrael: and the genealogy is 
not to be reckoned after the birth-right ; for 
Judah prevailed above his brethren, a?id of him 
came the chief ruler ; but the birth -right was 
Jofepb's. What this birth-right was, Jacob 
blemng Jofepb, Gen. xlviii. 22. telleth us in 
thefe words, Moreover I have given thee one 
portion above thy brethren, which I took out of 
the hand of the Amorite, with my fword and 
with my bow. Whereby it is not only plain, 
that the birth-right was nothing but a double 
K 3 portion, 

134 Of Government. 

portion j but the text in Chronicles is exprefs 
againft our author's doctrine, and mews that 
dominion was no part of the birth-right ; 
for it tells us, thaxjofipb had the birth-right, 
but Judah the dominion. One would think 
our author were very fond of the very name 
of birth-right, when he brings this inftance 
of Jacob and Efau, to prove that dominion 
belongs to the heir over his brethren. 

§. 116. i. Becaufe it will be but an ill 
example to prove, that dominion by God's 
ordination belonged to the eldeft fon, be- 
caufe Jacob the youngeft here had it, let 
bim come by it how he would : for if it 
prove any thing, it can only prove, againft 
our author, that the afjigtiment of dominion to 
the eldejl is not by divine infiitution, which 
would then be unalterable : for if by the 
law of God, or nature, abfolute power and 
empire belongs to the eldeft fon and his 
heirs, fo that they are fupreme monarchs, 
and all the reft of their brethren flaves, our 
author gives us reafon to doubt whether the 
eldeft fon has a power to part with it, to the 
prejudice of his pofterity, fince he tells us, 
Objervations, 158. That in grants and gifts 
that have their origi?ial from God or nature , 
no inferior power of man cati limit, or make any 
law of prescription againjl them. 

§. 117. 2. Becaufe this place, Gen. xxvii. 

29. brought by our author, concerns not at 

all the dominion of one brother over the 

5 ©ther. 

Of Government. 135 

other, nor the fubjection of Efau to Jacob : 
for it is plain in the hiftory, that Efau was 
never fubjcct to Jacob, but lived apart in 
mount Seir, where he founded a diftinct 
people and government', and was himfelf 
prince over them, as much as Jacob was in 
his own family. This text, if confidered, can 
never be understood of Efau himfelf, or the 
perfonal dominion of Jacob over him : for 
the words brethren and fons of thy mother, 
could not be ufed literally by Ifaac, who 
knew Jacob had only one brother -, and thefe 
words are fo far from being true in a literal 
fenfe, or eftablifhing any dominion in Jacob 
over Efau, that in the /lory we find the quite 
contrary, for Gen, xxxii. Jacob feveral times 
calls Efau lord, and himfelf his fervant ; and 
Gen. xxxiii. he bowed himfelf f even times to the 
ground to Efau. Whether Efau then were a 
fubject, and vaffal (nay, as our author tells us, 
all fubjects are flaves) to Jacob, and Jacob 
his fovereign prince by birth-right, I leave 
the reader to judge; and to believe if he 
can, that thefe words of Ifaac, Be lord over 
thy brethren, and let thy mother s fons bow down 
to thee, confirmed Jacob in a fovereignty over 
Efau, upon the account of the birth-right 
he had got from him. 

§. 118. He that reads the flory of Jacob 
and Efau, will find there was never any jurif- 
diction or authority, that either of them had 
over the other after their father's death : they 

K 4 lived 

i:6 Of Government. 

lived with the friendfhip and equality of bre- 
thren, neither lord, neither Jlave to his bro- 
ther ; but independent each of other, were 
both heads of their diftincl families, where 
they received no laws from one another, but 
lived feparately, and were the roots out of 
which fprang two diftinc~t people under two 
diftincl governments. This bleMing then of 
Ifaac, whereon our author would build the 
dominion of the elder brother, fignirles no 
more, but what Rebecca had been told from 
God, Gen. xxv. 23. Two nations are in thy 
womb, and two mamier of people Jlja/l be fe- 
parated from thy bowels, and the one people Jhall 
be flronger than the other people, and the elder 
Jhall Jerve the younger ; and fo Jacob bleffed 
fndah, Gen, xlix. and gave him the fcepter 
and dominion, from w T hence our author mi^ht 
nave argued as well, that jurifdiction and 
dominion belongs to the third fon over 
his brethren, as well as from this bleffing 
of Ifaac, that it belonged to facob : both 
thefe places contain only predictions of what 
mould long after happen to their pofterities, 
and not any declaration of the right of in- 
heritance to dominion in either. And thus 
we have our author's two great and only 
arguments to prove, that heirs are lords over 
their brethren. 

1. Becaufe God tells Cain, Gen.iv. that 
however fin might fet upon him, he ought 
cr might be m after of it ; for the mod learned 


Of Government. 137 

interpreters underftood the words of fin, and 
not of Abel, and give fo ftrong reafons for 
it, that nothing can convincingly be in- 
ferred, from fo doubtful a text, to our au- 
thor's purpofe. 

2. Becaufe in this of Gen. xxvii. Ifaac 
foretels that the Ifraelites, the pofterity of 
'Jacob, mould have dominion over the Edc/n- 
ites, the pofterity of Efau -, therefore fays 
our author, heirs are lords of their brethren : 
I leave any one to judge of the concluiion. 

§. 119. And now we fee how our author 
has provided for the defcending, and con- 
veyance down of Adams monarchical power, 
or paternal dominion to pofterity, by the 
inheritance of his heir, fucceeding to all his 
father's authority, and becoming upon his 
death as much lord as his father was, not only 
over his own children, but over his brethren, 
and all defcended from his father, and fo 
in infinitum. But yet who this heir is, he 
does not once tell us ; and all the light we 
have from him in this fo fundamental a point, 
is only, that in his inftance of Jacob, by 
ufing the word birth-right, as that which 
pafled from Efau to Jacob, he leaves us to 
guefs, that by heir, he means the eldeft fon ; 
though I do not remember he any where 
mentions exprefiy the title of the firft-born, 
but all along keeps himfelf under the fhelter 
of the indefinite term heir. But taking it to 
be his meaning, that the eldeft fon is heir, 


138 Of Government. 

(for if the eldeft be not, there will be no 
pretence why the fons (hould not be all heirs 
alike) and fo by right of primogeniture has 
dominion over his brethren j this is but one 
ftep towards the fettlement of fuccelTion, and 
the difficulties remain frill as much as ever, 
till he can (hew us who is meant by right 
heir, in all thofe cafes which may happen 
where the prefent poiTeiTor hath no fon. This 
he iilently paries over, and perhaps wifely 
too : for what can be wifer, aftqr one has 
affirmed, that the perfon having that power, 
as well as the power and form of government, 
is the ordinance of God, and by divine injlitu- 
tion, vid. Cbfervations, 254. p. 12. than to 
be careful, not to itart any queflion con- 
cerning the perfon, the refolution whereof 
will certainly lead him into a confefllon, that 
God and nature hath determined nothing 
about him ? And if our author cannot fhew 
who by right of nature, or a clear pofitive 
law of God, has the next right to inherit the 
dominion of this natural monarch he has 
been at fuch pains about, when he died 
without a fon, he might have fpared his 
pains in all the reft, it being more neceflary 
for the fettling men's confciences, and deter- 
mining their fubjection and allegiance, to 
mew them who by original right, fuperior 
and antecedent to the will, or any act. of 
men, hath a title to this paternal jur if diBion, 
than it is to fhew that by nature there was 


Of Government. 139 

fuch a jurifdittion -, it being to no purpofe for 
me to know there is fuch a paternal power, 
which I ought, and am difpofed to obey, 
unlefs, where there are many pretenders, I alfo 
know the perfon that is rightfully invefled 
and endowed with it. 

§. 120. For the main matter in queftion 
being concerning the duty of my obedience, 
and the obligation of confcience I am un- 
der to pay it to him that is of right my 
lord and ruler, I muft know the perfon that 
this right of paternal power refides in, and 
fo impowers him to claim obedience from 
me : for let it be true what he fays, p. 12. 
That civil power not only in general is by divine 
infitution, but even the alignment of it fpe- 
daily to the eldejl parents ; and Observations, 
254. 'That not only the power or right of go- 
vernment, but the form of the power of go- 
verning, and the perfon having that power, are 
all the ordinance of God-, yet unlefs he fhew 
us in all cafes who is this perfon, ordained by 
God, who is this eldejl parent ; all his ab- 
ftract notions of monarchical power will fig- 
nify juft nothing, when they are to be re- 
duced to practice, and men are confcientioufly 
to pay their obedience : for paternal jurif- 
dicfion being not the thing to be obeyed, be- 
caufe it cannot command, but is only that 
which gives one man a right which another 
hath not, and if it come by inheritance, 
another man cannot have, to command and 


140 Of Government. 

be obeyed ; it is ridiculous to fay, I pay obe- 
dience to the -paternal power, when I obey 
him, to whom paternal power gives no right 
to my obedience : for he can have no divine 
right to my obedience, who cannot mew his 
divine right to the power of ruling over me, 
as well as that by divine right there is fuch 
a power in the world. 

§. 121. And hence not being able to make 
out any prince's title to government, as heir 
to Adam, which therefore is* of no ufe, and 
had been better let alone, he is fain to refolve 
all into prefent porTeffion, and makes civil 
obedience as due to an nfurper, as to a lawful 
king ; and thereby the ufurpers title as good. 
His words are, Obfervations, 253. and they 
deferve to be remembered : If an ufurper dif- 
poffefs the true heir, the fubjcBs obedience to 
the fatherly power mufl go along, and wait upon 
God's providence. But I mall leave his title 
of ufurpers to be examined in its due place, 
and defire my fober reader to confider what 
thanks princes owe fuch politics as this, which 
can fuppofe paternal power (/. e.) a 'light to 
government in the hands of a Cade, or a 
Cromwell-, and fo all obedience being due to 
paternal power, the obedience of fubjects 
will be due to them, by the fame right, and 
upon as good grounds, as it is to lawful 
princes; and yet this, as dangerous a doctrine 
as it is, muH: neceffarily follow from making 
all political power to be nothing elfe, but 


Of Government. 141 

Adam's paternal power by right and divine 
inflitution, defcending from him without be- 
ing able to (hew to whom it defcended, or 
who is heir to it. 

§. 122. To fettle government in the world, 
and to lay obligations to obedience on any 
man's conference, it is as neceffary (fuppoiing 
with our author that all power be nothing 
but the being poffefled of Adam's fatherhood) 
to fatisfy him, who has a right to this 
power, this fatherhood, when the poiTeflbr 
dies without fons to fucceed immediately to 
it, as it was to tell him, that upon the 
death of the father, the eldefl fon had a 
right to it : for it is ftill to be remembered, 
that the great queftion is, (and that which 
our author would be thought to contend for, 
if he did not fometimes forget it) what per- 
fons have a right to be obeyed, and not 
whether there be a power in the world, which 
is to be called paternal, without knowing in 
whom it refides : for fo it be a power, i. e. 
right to govern, it matters not, whether it 
be termed paternal or regal, natural or ac- 
quired-, whether you call it fupreme father- 
hood, or fupr -erne brotherhood, will be all one, 
provided we know who has it. 

§. 123. I go on then to a{k, whether in the 

inheriting of this paternal power, this fupreme 

fatherhood, the grandfon by a daughter hath 

a right before a nephew by a brother ? Whe- - 

ther the grandfon by the eldeft fon, being an 


142 Op Government. 

infant, before the younger fon, a man and 
able ? Whether the daughter before the 
uncle ? or any other man, defcended by a 
male line ? Whether a grandfon by a younger 
daughter, before a grand-daughter by an 
elder daughter ? Whether the elder fon by 
a concubine, before a younger fon by a wife ? 
From whence alfo will arife many queflions 
of legitimation, and what in nature is the 
difference betwixt a wife and a concubine ? 
for as to the municipal or pofitive laws of 
men, they can fignify nothing here. It may 
farther be afked, Whether the eldeft fon, 
being a fool, (hall inherit this paternal power, 
before the younger, a wife man ? and what 
degree of folly it muft be that fhall ex- 
clude him ? and who fhall be judge of it ? 
Whether the fon of a fool, excluded for his 
folly, before the fon of his wife brother who 
reigned ? Who has the paternal power whilfl 
the widow- queen is with child by the de- 
ceafed king, and no body knows whether it 
will be a fon or a daughter ? Which fhall be 
heir of the two male-twins, who by the 
diffection of the mother were laid open to 
the world ? Whether a fifter by the half 
blood, before a brother's daughter by the 
whcle blood ? 

§. 124. Thefe, and many more fuch doubts, 
might be propofed about the titles of fuc- 
ceflion, and the right of inheritance; and 
that not as idle fpeculatidns, but fuch as in 


Of Government. 143 

hiftory we mall find have concerned the 
inheritance of crowns and kingdoms ; and 
if our's want them, we need not go farther 
for famous examples of . it, than the other 
kingdom in this very ifland, which having 
been fully related by the ingenious and learned 
author of Patriarcha non Monarcha, I need fay 
no more of. Till our author hath refolved 
all the doubts that may arife ajpout the next 
heir, and mewed that they are plainly deter- 
mined by the law of nature, or the revealed 
law of God, all his fuppoiitions of a mo- 
narchicaly abfoliite, fnpreme, paternal power in 
Adam, and the defcent of that power to his 
heirs, would not be of the leaf! ufe to efta- 
blifh the authority, or make out the title, of 
any one prince now on earth; but would 
rather unfettle and bring all into queflion : 
for let our author tell us as long as he pleafes, 
and let all men believe it too, that Adam had 
a paternal, and thereby a monarchical power; 
that this (the only power in the world) de- 
Jcended to his heirs ; and that there is no other 
power in the world but this : let this be all 
as clear demonftration, as it is manifeft error, 
yet if it be not paft doubt, to whom this 
paternal power defcends, and whofe now it is, 
no body can be under any obligation of obe- 
dience, unlefs any one will fay, that I am 
bound to pay obedience to paternal power in 
a man who has no more paternal power than- 
I myfelf -, which is all one as to fay, I obey 
a man, becaufe he has a right to govern ; 


144 O F Government. 
and if I be afked, how I know he has a 
right to govern, I mould anfwer, it cannot 
be known, that he has any at all : for that 
cannot be the reafon of my obedience, which 
I know not to be fo ; much lefs can that be 
a reafon of my obedience, which no body at 
all can know to be fo. 

§. 125. And therefore all this ado about 
Adam s fatherhood, the greatnefs of its power, 
and the necefiity of its fuppofal, helps no- 
thing to eftabliih the power of thofe that 
govern, or to determine the obedience of 
iubjects who are to obey, if they cannot 
tell whom they are to obey, or it cannot 
be known who are to govern, and who to 
obey. In the ftate the world is now, it is irre- 
coverably ignorant, who is Adams heir. This 
father 'hood, this monarchical power of Adam, 
defcending to his heirs, would be of no more 
life to the government of mankind, than it 
would be to the quieting of mens confciences, 
or fecuring their healths, if our author had 
allured them, that Adam had a power to for- 
give fins, or cure difeafes, which by divine 
inftitution defcended to his heir, whilft this 
heir is impoilible to be known. And (hould 
not he do as rationally, who upon this af- 
furance of our author went and confefTed his 
fins, and expected a good abfolution ; or 
took phylic with expectation of health, from 
any one who had taken on himfelf the name 
of prieft or phyfician, or thru ft himfelf into 
thofe employments, faying, I acquiefce in 
1 the 

Of Government. 145 

the abfolving power defcending from Adam, 
or I mall be cured by the medicinal power 
defcending from Adam j as he who fays, I 
fubmit to and obey the paternal power de- 
fcending from Adam, when it is confefTed all 
thefe powers defcend only to his iingle heir, 
and that heir is unknown ? 

§. 126. It is true, the civil lawyers have 
pretended to determine fome of thefe cafes 
concerning the fucceffion of princes; but by 
our author's principles, they have meddled in 
a matter that belongs not to them : for if all 
political power be derived only from Adam, 
and be to defcend only to his fucceffive heirs, 
by the ordinance of God and divine ut ion, 
this is a right antecedent and paramount to all 
government ; and therefore the poiitive laws 
of men cannot determine that, which is itfelf 
the foundation of all law and government, and 
is to receive its rule only from the law of God 
and nature. And that being filent in the 
cafe, I am apt to think there is no fuch right 
to be conveyed this way : I am fure it would 
be to no purpofe if there were, and men would 
be more at a lofs concerning government, 
and obedience to governors, than if there 
were no fuch right; lince by pofitive laws* 
and compact, which divine infitution (if there 
be any) (huts out, all thefe endlefs inextricable 
doubts can be fafely provided againil : but it 
can never be underftood, how a divine natu- 
ral right, and that of fuch moment as is all 
order and peace in the world, mould be con- 

L veyed 

146 Of Government. 

veyed down to pofterity, without any plain 
natural or divine rule concerning it. And 
there would be an end of all civil govern- 
ment, if the alignment of civil power were 
by divine injiitution to the heir, and yet by that 
divine injiitution the perfon of the heir could 
not be known. This paternal regal power 
being by divine right only his, it leaves no 
room for human prudence, or confent, to 
place it any where elfe ; for if only one man 
hath a divine right to the obedience of man- 
kind, no body can claim that obedience, but 
he that can mew that right ; nor can men's 
confeiences by any other pretence be obliged 
to it. And thus this doctrine cuts up all go- 
vernment by the roots. 

§. 1 27. Thus we fee how our author, laying 
it for a fure foundation, that the very perfon 
that is to rule, is the ordinance of God, and 
by divine injiitution, tells us at large, only that 
this perfon is the heir, but who this heir is, 
he leaves us to guefs ; and fo this divine injii- 
tution, which afligns it to a perfon whom we 
have no rule to know, is jufr. as good as an 
affignment to no body at all. But whatever 
our author does, divine injiitution makes no fuch 
ridiculous alignments : nor can God be fup- 
pofed to make it a facred law, that one cer- 
tain perfon mould have a right to fomething, 
and yet not give rules to mark out, and know 
that perfon by, or give an heir a divine right 
to power, and yet not point out who that 
heir is. It is rather to be thought, that an 


OF Government. 147 

heir had no fuch right by divine inftitution, 
than that God mould give fuch a right to 
the heir, but yet leave it doubtful and unde- 
terminable who fuch heir is. 

§. 128. If God had given the JandofCVz- 
72aan to Abraham, and in general terms to fome 
body after him, without naming his feed, 
whereby it might be known who that fome- 
body was, it would have been as good and 
ufeful an alignment, to determine the right 
to the land of Canaan, as it would be the 
determining the right of crowns, to give 
empire to Adam and his fucceffive heirs after 
him, without telling who his heir is : for 
the word heir, without a rule to know who 
it is, fignifies no more than fome body, I 
know not whom. God making it a divine 
injiitution, that men mould not marry thofe 
who were near of kin, thinks it not enough 
to fay, None of you fiall approach to any that 
is near of kin to him, to uncover their naked- 
nefs ; but moreover, gives rules to know who 
are thofe near of kin, forbidden by divine in- 
jlitution -, or elfe that law would have been of 
no ufe, it being to no purpofe to lay re- 
ftraint, or give privileges to men, in fuch 
general terms, as the particular perfon con- 
cerned cannot be known by. But God not 
having any where laid, the next heir mall 
inherit all his father's eftate or dominion, we 
are not to wonder, that he hath no where' 
appointed who that heir mould be ; for never 
having intended any fuch thing, never de- 

L z ilgned 

143 Of Government. 

figned any heir in that fenfe, we cannot ex- 
pect he fhould any where nominate, or ap- 
point any perfon to it, as we might, had it 
been other wife. And therefore in fcripture, 
though the word heir occur, yet there is no 
fuch thing as heir in our author's fenfe, one 
that was by right of nature to inherit all that 
his father had, exclufive of his brethren. 
Hence Sarah fuppofes, that if Iflmiael ftaid in 
the houfe, to mare in Abrahams eftate after 
his death, this fon of a bond-woman might 
be heir with Ifaac ; and therefore, fays fhe, 
caft out this band-woman and her fon, for the 
fon of this bond-woman jl:all not be heir with 
my fon : but this cannot excufe our author, 
who telling us there is, in every number of 
men, one who is right and next heir to 
Adam, ought to have told us what the laws 
of defcent are : but he having been io 
fparing to inftrucT: us by rules, how to know 
who is heir, let us fee in the next place, what 
his hiftory out of fcripture, on which he 
pretends wholly to build his government, 
^ives us in this neceflarv and fundamental 

§. 129. Our author, to make good the title 
of his book, p. 1 ?. begins his hiftory of the 
defcent of Adams regal power, p. 13. in 
thefc words : This Icrdjhip which Adam by 
command had over the whole world, and by 
right defc ending from him, the patriarchs did 
enjoy, was a large, &c. Flow does he prove 
that the patriarchs by defcent did enjoy it ? 


Of Government. 149 

for dominion of life and death, fays he, we find 
Judah the father pronounced fentence of death 
againjl Thamar his daughter in law for playing 
the harlot , p. 13. How does this prove that 
Judah had abfolute and fovereign authority ? 
be pronounced fentence of death. The pronoun- 
cing of fentence of death is not a certain 
mark of fovereignty, but ufually the office of 
inferior magiftrates. The power of making 
laws of life and death is indeed a mark of 
fovereignty, but pronouncing the fentence 
according to thofe laws may be done by 
others, and therefore this will but ill prove 
that he had fovereign authority: as if one 
mould fay, Judge Jeff'eries pronounced fen- 
tence of death in the late times, therefore 
Judge Jeff'eries had fovereign authority. But 
it will be faid, Judah did it not by com- 
miflion from another, and therefore did it in 
his own right. Who knows whether he had 
any right at all ? Heat of paflion might carry 
him to do that which he had no authority 
to do. Judah had dominion of life and death : 
how does that appear ? He exercifed it, he 
pronounced fentence of death againjl Thamar : 
our author thinks it is very good proof, that 
becaufe he did it, therefore he had a right 
to do it : he lay with her alfo : by the fame 
way of proof, he had a right to do that 
too. If the confequence be good from do- 
ing to a right of doing, Abfalom too may 
be reckoned amongft our author's fove- 
L 3 reigns, 

I co Of Govern m e n t. 

reigns, for he pronounced fuch a fentcnce of 
death againft his brother jimnon, and much 
upon a like occafion, and had it executed 
too, if that be Sufficient to prove a dominion 
of life and death. 

But allowing this all to be clear demon- 
stration of fovereign power, who was it that 
had this lordfhip by right defeending to him from 
Adam, as large and ample as the abfoluteft do~ 
minion of any monarch f judah, fays our au- 
thor, Judah a younger fon of Jacob, his 
father and elder brethren living ; fo that if 
our author's own proof be to be taken, a 
younger brother may, in the life of his father 
and elder brothers, by right of defcent, enjoy 
Adam'i monarchical power j and if one fo 
qualified may be monarch by defcent, why 
may not every man ? if Judah, his father 
and elder brother living, were one of Adam's 
heirs, I know not who can be excluded from 
this inheritance; all men by inheritance may 
be monarchs as well as judah. 

§. 130. Touching war, ^ce fee that Abraham 
commanded an army of 318 foldiers of his own 
family, and Efau met his brother Jacob with 
400 men at arms : for matter of peace, Abra- 
ham made a league with Abimelech, &c. 
p. 13. Is it not poffible for a man to have 
318 men in his- family, without being 
heir to Adam f A planter in the Weft Indies 
has more, and might, if he pleafed, (who 
doubts ?) mufter them up and lead them out 


Of Government. 151 

againft the Indians, to feek reparation upon 
any injury received from them ; and all this 
without the abfolute dominion of a monarch, 
dcfe ending to him from Adam. Would it not 
be an admirable argument to prove, that all 
power by God's inftitution defcended from 
Adam by inheritance, and that the very per- 
fon and power of this planter were the ordi- 
nance of God, becaufe he had power in his 
family over fervants, born in his houfe, and 
bought with his money ? For this was juft 
Abrahams cafe; thofe who were rich in the 
patriarch's days, as in the Weft Indies now, 
bought men and maid fervants, and by their 
increafe, as well as purchafing of new, came 
to have large and numerous families, which 
though they made ufe of in war or peace, 
<:an it be thought the power they had over 
them was an inheritance defcended from 
Adam, when it was the purchafe of their 
money ? A man's riding in an expedition 
againft an enemy, his horfe bought in a fair 
would be as good a proof that the owner 
enjoyed the lordjhip which Adam by command 
bad over the whole world, by right dcfcending 
to him, as Abrahams leading out the fervants 
of his family is, that the patriarchs enjoyed 
this lordfhip by defcent from Adam : fince 
the title to the power, the mailer had in 
both cafes, whether over Haves or horfes, 
was only from his purchafe ; and the getting 
a dominion over any thing by bargain and 
L 4 money, 

152 Of Government. 

money, is anew way of proving one had it 
by defcent and inheritance. 

§. 131. But making war and peace are marks 
of fivereignty. Let it be ib in politic fo- 
cities : may not therefore a man in the V/efi 
Indies, who hath with him fons of his own, 
friends, or companions, foldiers under pay, 
or flaves bought with money, or perhaps a 
band made up of all thefe, make war and 
peace, if there mould be occaiion, and ratify 
the articles too with an oath, without being a 
fovereign, an abfolute king over thofe who 
went with him r He that law-, he cannot, 
mull then allow many mailers of fhips, many 
private planters, to be abfolute monarchs, for 
as much as this they have done. War and 
peace cannot be made for politic focieties, 
but by the fupreme power of fuch focieties ; 
becaufe war and ceace, vivins: a different 
motion to the force of fuch a politic body, 
none can make war or peace, but that which 
has the direction of the force of the whole 
body, and that in politic focieties is only 
the fupreme power. In voluntary focieties 
for the time, he that has fuch a power by 
confent, may make war and peace, and ib 
may a iingle man for himfeif, the ilate of 
war not confifling in the number of parti- 
fans, but the enmity of the parties, where 
they have no fuperior to appeal to. 

§. 132. The actual making of war or peace 
is no proof of any other power, but only; 


Of Government. 153 

oF difpofing thofe to exercife or ceafe ads of 
enmity for whom he makes it; and this 
power in many cafes any one may have 
without any politic fupremacy : and therefore 
the making of war or peace will not prove 
that every one that does (0 is a politic ruler, 
much lefs a kino; ; for then common-wealths 
mud be kings too, for they do as certainly 
make war and peace as monarchical govern- 

§. 133. But granting this a mark of five- 
relgnty in Abraham, is it a proof of the defcent 
to him of Adams fovereignty over the whole 
world ? If it be, it will furely be as good a 
proof of the defcent of Adam'j- lordjliip to 
others too. And then common-wealths, as 
well as Abraham, will be heirs of Adam, for 
they make 'war and peace, as well as he. If 
you fay, that the lordjhip of Adam doth not 
by right defcend to common-wealths, though 
they make war and peace, the fame fay I of 
Abraham, and then there is an end of your 
argument : if you iland to your argument, 
and fay thofe that do make war and peace, as 
common-wealths do without doubt, do inherit 
Adam'j- lordjhip, there is an end of your mo- 
narchy, unlefs you will fay, that common- 
wealths by defcent ev.jcying Adam'j /ord/hip are 
monarchies -, and that indeed would be a new 
way of making all the governments in the 
"world monarchical. 

1 54 Of Government. 

§. 134. To give our author the honour of 
this new invention, for I confefs it is not I 
have firfi found it out by tracing his prin- 
ciples, and fo charged it on him, it is fit my 
readers know that (as abfurd as it may feem) 
he teaches it himfelf, p. 23. where he in- 
genuoufly fays, In all kingdoms and common* 
wealths in the world, whether the prince be the 
fupr erne father of the people, or but the true heir 
to fuch a father, or come to the crow?: by u fur- 
cation or eleciion, or whether feme few or a 
7/iultitude govern the common-wealth ; yet fill 
the authority that is in any one, or in many, or 
in all thefe, is the only right, and natural au- 
thority of a fupreme father ; which right of 
fatherhood, he often tells us, is regal and royal 
authority-, as particularly, p. 12. the page 
immediately preceding this inftance of Abra- 
ham. This regal authority, he fays, thofe 
that govern common-wealths have ; and if 
it be true, that regal and royal authority be 
in thofe that govern common-wealths, it is 
as true that common-wealths are governed 
by kings; for if regal authority be in him 
that governs, he that governs muft needs be 
a king, and fo all common- wealths are no- 
thing but down-right monarchies; and then 
what need any more ado about the matter ? 
The governments of the world are as they 
mould be, there is nothing but monarchy in 
it. This, without doubt, was the fureft way 
our author could have found, to turn all 


Of Government. 155 

other governments, but monarchical, out of 
the world. 

§. 135. But all this fcarce proves Abra- 
ham to have been a king, as heir to Adam. 
If by inheritance he had been king, hot, who 
was of the fame family, mull needs have been 
his fubjecl, by that title, before the fervants 
in his family ; but we fee they lived as friends 
and equals, and when their herdfmen could 
not agree, there was no pretence of jurif- 
diction or fuperiority between them, but they 
parted by confent, Gen. xiii. hence he is 
called both by Abraham, and by the text, 
Abraham s brother, the name of friendship 
and equality, and not of jurifdiclion and 
authority, though he were really but his ne- 
phew. And if our author knows that Abra- 
ham was Adam'b heir, and a king, it was 
more, it feems, than Abraham himielf knew, 
or his fervant whom he fent a wooing for his 
fon -, for when he fets out the advantages* of 
the match, xxiv. Gen, 35. thereby to pre- 
vail with the young woman and her friends* 
he fays, / am Abraham's fervant, and the lord 
hath bkffed my majier greatly, and he is become 
great ; and he hath given hint flocks and herds, 
and filver and gold, and -men- fervants and maid- 
fervants, and camels and aJJ'es ; a?id Sarah, my 
majier s wife, bare a fon to my mafler when 
Jhe was old, and unto him hath he given all he 
hath. Can one think that a difcreet fervant, 
that was thus particular to fet out his mailer's 


156 Of Government. 

greatnefs, would have omitted the crown 
Ifaac was to have, if he had known of any 
iiich ? Can it he imagined he fhould have 
neglected to have told them on fuch an 00 
caiion as this, that Abraham was a king, a 
name well known at that time, for he had 
nine of them his neighbours, if he or his 
mailer had thought any fuch thing, the 
likelier! matter of all the reft, to make his 
errand fuccefsful ? 

§. 136. But this difcovery it feems v/as 
referved for our author to make 2 or 3000 
years after, and let him enjoy the credit of 
it •, only he mould have taken care that fome 
of Adam's land mould have defcended to this 
his heir, as well as all Adams lordfhip : for 
though this lordfhip which Abraham, (if we 
may believe our author) as well as the other 
patriarchs, by right defcending to him, did enjoy, 
was as large and ample as the abfolnteji domi- 
nion of any monarch which hath been fmce the 
creation, yet his eftate, his territories, his 
dominions were very narrow and fcanty, for 
he had not the pofTeffion of a foot of land, 
till he bought a field and a cave of the fons 
of Heth to burv Sarah in. 

§. 137. The inftance of Efau joined with 
this of Abraham, to prove that the lordjhip 
which Adam had over the whole world, by right 
defcending from him, the patriarchs did enjoy, 
is yet more pleafant than the former. EJau 
met his brother Jacob with 400 men at arms ; he 

1 therefore, 

Of Government. 157 

therefore was a king by right of heir to Adam. 
Four hundred armed men then, however got 
together, are enough to prove him that leads 
them, to be a king and Adams heir. There 
have been tories in Ireland, (whatever there 
are in other countries) who would have 
thanked our author for fo honourable an 
opinion of them, efpecially if there had been 
no body near with a better title of 500 armed 
men, to question their royal authority of 400. 
It is a fhame for men to trifle fo, to fay no 
worfe of it, in fo ferious an argument. Here 
Efau is brought as a proof that Adam's lord- 
ihip, Adam's abfolute dominion, as large as thai 
of any monarch, defended by right to the pa- 
triarchs, and in this very chap. p. 19. Jacob 
is brought as an inftance of one, that by 
birth -right was lord over his brethren. So we 
have here two brothers abfolute monarchs by 
the fame title, and at the fame time heirs to 
Adam ; the eldeft, heir to Adam, becaufe he 
met his brother with 400 men ; and the 
youngeft, heir to Adam by birth-right : Efau 
enjoyed the lordfip which Adam bad over the 
whole world by right defcending to him, in as 
large and ample -manner, as the abjolutejl do- 
minion of any monarch; and at the fame time, 
"Jacob lord over him, by the right heirs have to 
be lords over their brethren. Rifum teneatis f 
I never, I confefs, met with any man of 
parts fo dexterous as Sir Robert at this way 
of arguing: but it was his misfortune to 


1 58 Of Govern m e n t. 

light upon an hypothecs, that could not bt 
accommodated to the nature of things, and 
human affairs ; his principles could not be 
made to agree with that conftitution and 
order, which God had fettled in the world, 
and therefore mull needs often clafh with 
common fenfe and experience. 

§. 138. In the next fection, he tells us, 
This patriarchal power continued not only till 
the food, but after it, as the name patriarch 
doth in part prove. The word patriarch doth 
more than in part prove, that patriarchal 
power continued in the world as long as there 
were patriarchs, for it is necefiary that pa- 
triarchal power mould be whilft there are 
patriarchs ; as it is necefiary there mould be 
paternal or conjpgdr power whilft there are 
fathers or hufbands ; but this is but playing 
with names. That which he would falla- 
cioufly in fin u ate is the thing in queftion to be 
proved, viz. that the lordfiip which Adam 
had ever the world, the luppofed abfolute 
univerfal dominion of Adam by right defend- 
ing from him, the patriarchs did enjoy. If he 
affirms fuch an abfolute monarchy continued 
to the flood, in the world, I would be glad 
to know what records he has it from ; for I 
confefs I cannot find a word of it in my 
Bible : if by patriarchal power he means any 
thing elfe, it is nothing to the matter in hand. 
And how the name patriarch in fome part 
proves, that thofe, who are called by that 


Of Government. 159 

name, had abfolute monarchical power, I 
confefs, I do not fee, and therefore I think 
needs no anfwer till the argument from it be 
made out a little clearer. 

§. 139. The three fons of Noah had the 
world, Jays our author, divided amongjl them by 
their father, for of them was the whole world 
overfpread, p. 14. The world might be over- 
fpread by the offspring of Noah's fons, though 
he never divided the world amongft them -, for 
the earth might be replenished without being 
divided : fo that all our author's argument here 
proves no fuch diviiion. However, I allow it 
to him, and then afk, the world being di- 
vided amongft them, which of the three was 
Adams heir ? If Adam's lordfjip, Adam's mo- 
narchy, by right defcended only to the eldeft, 
then the other two could be but his fabjecis, his 
/laves : if by right it defcended to all three 
brothers, by the fame right, it will defcend 
to all mankind; and then it will be impoffible 
v/hat he fays, p. 19. that heirs are lords of 
their brethren, mould be true ; but all bro- 
thers, and confequently all men, will be equal 
and independent, all heirs to Adams mo- 
narchy, and confequently all monarchs too, 
one as much as another. But it will be faid, 
Noah their father divided the world amongft 
them ; fo that our author will allow more to 
Noah, than he will to God almighty, for 
Objervations, 211. he thought it hard, that 
God himfelf mould give the world to Noah' 
and his fons, to the prejudice of Noah's birth - 
Z right : 

160 Of Government. 

right : his words are, Noah was left fole heir 
to the world : why fiould it be thought that God 
would difmherit him of his birth- right, and make 
him, of all ?nen in the world, the only tenant in 
common with his children f and yet here he 
thinks it fit that Noah mould disinherit Stem 
of his birth-right, and divide the world be- 
twixt him and his brethren ; fo that this birth- 
right, when our author pleafes, mud, and 
when he pleafes mufl not, be facred and in- 

§. 140. If Noah did divide the world be- 
tween his fons, and his afiignment of domi- 
nions to them were good, there is an end of 
divine inflitution ; all our author's difcourfe 
of Adams heir, with whatfoever he builds 
on it, is quite out of doors; the natural 
power of kings falls to the ground; and then 
the form of the power governing, and the perfon 
having that power, will not be (as he fays they 
are, Obfervations, 254.) the ordinance of God, 
but they will be ordinances of man : for if 
the right of the heir be the ordinance of 
God, a divine right, no man, father or not 
father, can alter it : if it be not a divine 
right, it is only human, depending on the 
will of man : and fo where human inflitution 
gives it not, the firft-born has no right at all 
above his brethren ; and men may put go- 
vernment into what hands, and under what 
form, they pleafe. 

§. 141. He goes on, Mofi of the civile jl na- 
tions of the earth labour to fetch their original 


Of Government. 161 

from fome of the fins, or nephews of Noah, 
p. 14. How many do moft of the civileft 
nations amount to ? and who are they ? I 
fear the Chinefes, a very great and civil people, 
as well as feveral other people of the Eafi, 
IVeft, North and South, trouble not them- 
felves much about this matter. All that 
believe the Bible, which I believe are our 
author's mof of the civileji nation nuft ne- 
ceffarily derive themfelveo fro thi but 

for the reft of the world, the) ink little 
of his fons or nephews. But if the heralds 
and antiquaries of all nations, for it is thefe 
men generally that labour to find out the 
originals of nations, or all the nations them- 
felves, Jloould labour to fetch their original from 
fome of the fins- or nephews of Noah, what 
would this be to prove, that the lord/hip which 
Adam had over the whole world, by right de- 
fended to the patriarchs ? Whoever, nations, 
or races of men, labour to fetch their original 
from, may be concluded to be thought by 
them, men of renown, famous to pofterity, 
for the greatnefs of their virtues and actions; 
but beyond thefe they look not, nor confider 
who they were heirs to, but look on them as 
fuch as raifed themfclves, by their own virtue, 
to a degree that would give a luflre to thofe 
who in future ages could pretend to derive 
themfelves from them. But if it were Ogyges, 
Hercules, Brama, Tamberlain, Pharamond ; 
nay, if Jupiter and Saturn were the names, 
M from 

\6z Of Government. 

from whence divers races of men, both an- 
cient and modern, have laboured to derive 
their original ; will that prove, that thofe 
men enjoyed the lordfhip of Adam, by right 
defcending to them ? If not, this is but a 
flouri/h of our author's to miflead his reader, 
that in itfelf figniiies nothing. 

§. 142. To as much purpofe is what he 
tells us, p. 15. concerning this divifion of 
the world, That fane fay it was by Lot, and 
others that Noah failed round the Mediter- 
ranean in ten years, and divided the world into 
Afia, Afric and Europe, portions for his 
three fons. America then, it feems, was left 
to be his that could catch it. Why our au- 
thor takes fuch pains to prove the divifion of 
the world by Noah to his fons, and will not 
leave out an imagination, though no better 
than a dream, that he can find any where to 
favour it, is hard to guefs, fince fuch a di- 
vifion, if it prove any thing, mull necelfarily 
take away the title of Adams heir -, unlefs 
three brothers can all together be heirs of 
Adam ; and therefore the following words, 
Howfoever the manner of this divifion be un- 
certain, yet it is mojl certain the divifion itfelf 
was by families from Noah and his children, 
over which the parents were heads and princes, 
p. 15. if allowed him to be true, and of 
any force to prove, that all the power in the 
world is nothing but the lordfhip of Adam\f 
defcending by right, they will only prove, that 


Of Government. 163 

the fathers of the children are all heirs to 
this lordfhip of Adam : for if in thofe days 
Cham and Japbet, and other parents, befides 
the eldeft ion, were heads and princes over 
their families, and had a right to divide the 
earth by families, what hinders younger bro- 
thers, being fathers of families, from having 
the fame right ? If Cha?n and Japhet were 
princes by right defcending to them, not- 
withstanding any title of heir in their elder! 
brother, younger brothers by the fame right 
defcending to them are princes now ; and fo 
all our author's natural power of kings will 
reach no farther than their own children, and 
no kingdom, by this natural right, can be 
bigger than a family : for either this lord- 
Jhip of Adam over the whole world, by right 
defcends only to the eldeft fon, and then there 
can be but one heir, as our author fays, p. 19. 
or elfe, it by right defcends to all the fons 
equally, and then every father of a family 
will have it, as well as the three fons of 
Noah : take which you will, it deftroys the 
prefent governments and kingdoms, that are 
now in the world, fince whoever has this 
natural power of a king, by right defcending 
to him, muft have it, either as our author 
tells us Cam had it, and be lord over his 
brethren, and fo be alone king of the whole 
world -, or elfe, as he tells us here, Shem, 
Cham and Japbet had it y three brothers, and 
fo be only prince of his own family, and all 

M 2 families 

164 Of Government. 

families independent one of another : all the 
world mud be only one empire by the right 
of the next heir, or elfe every family be a 
didincl: government of itfelf, by the lordjlrip 
of Adam'i defcending to parents of families. 
And to this only tend all the proofs he here 
^ives us of the defcent of Adam's lordfhip : 
for continuing his ftory of this defcent, he 

§. 143. In the difperfion of 'Babel, we mujl 

certainly find the efiablifoment of royal power, 

throughout the kingdoms of the world, p. 14. 

If you muft find it, pray do, and you will 

help us to a new piece of hiflory : but you 

mull mew it us before we mail be bound to 

believe, that regal power was eftablifhed in 

the world upon your principles : for, that 

regal power was eftablifhed in the kingdoms 

of the world, I think no body will difpute ; 

but that there mould be kingdoms in the 

world, whofe feveral kings enjoyed their 

crowns, by right defcending to them from Adam, 

that we think not only apocryphal, but alfo 

utterly impoffible. If our author has no 

better foundation for his monarchy than a 

fuppofition of what was done at the difperfion 

fA Babel, the monarchy he erects thereon, 

whofe top is to reach to heaven to unite 

mankind, will ferve only to divide and fcatter 

them as that tower did -, and, inftead of efta- 

blifning civil government and order in the 

world, will produce nothing but confufion. 

§. 144. 

Of Government. 16$ 

§. 144. For he tells us, the nations they 
were divided into, were diftinSt families, which 
had fathers for rulers over them ; whereby it 
appears, that even in the confufion, God was 
careful to preferve the fatherly authority, by 
dijlributing the diverfty of languages according 
to the diverfty of families, p. 14. It would 
have been a hard matter for any one but our 
author to have found out to plainly, in the 
text he here brings, that all the nations in 
that difperfion were governed by fathers, and 
that God was careful to preferve the fatherly 
authority. The words of the text are ; Thefe 
are the fons of Shem after their families, after 
their tongues in their lands, after their nations. % 
and the fame thing is faid of Cham and 
jfaphet, after an enumeration of their po- 
fterities ; in all which there is not one word 
faid of their governors, or forms of govern- 
ment; of fathers, or fatherly authority. But 
our author, who is very quick lighted to fpv 
out fatherhood, where no body elfe could fee 
any the leafl glimpfes of it, tells us pofitivelv 
their rulers were fathers, and God was careful 
to preferve the fatherly authority ; and why ? 
Becaufe thofe of the fame family {poke the 
fame language, and fo of necefiity in the 
divifion kept together. Juft as if one mould 
argue thus : Hanibal in his army, confining 
of divers nations, kept thofe of the fame 
language together ; therefore fathers were 
captains of each band, and Hanibal was careful 

M 3 of 

i66 Of Government. 

of the fatherly authority: or in peopling of 
Carolina* the Englifi, French, Scotch and 
Welch that are there, plant themfelves toge- 
ther, and by them the country is divided in 
their lands after their tongues, after their fa- 
milies, after their nations ; therefore care was 
taken of the fatherly authority : or becaufe, 
in many parts of America, every little tribe 
was a diftincl: people, with a different lan- 
guage, one mould infer, that therefore God 
was careful to preferve the fatherly authority y 
or that therefore their rulers enjoyed Adam'i 
lordfcip by right defending to them, though 
we know not who were their governors, nor 
what their form of government, but only 
that they were divided into little independent 
focieties, fpeaking different languages, 

§. 145. The fcripture fays not a word of 

their rulers or forms of government, but only 

gives an account, how mankind came to be 

divided into diffcindt languages and nations ; 

and therefore it is not to argue from the 

authority of fcripture, to tell us pofitively, 

fathers were their rulers, when the fcripture 

fays no fuch thing ; but to fet up fancies of 

one's own brain, when we confidently aver 

matter of fact, where records are utterly 

filent. Upon a like ground, /. e. none at all, 

he fays, That they were not confufed multitudes 

without heads and governors, and at liberty 

to choofe what governors or governments they 

f leafed, 

§. 146, 

Of Government. 167 

§. 146. For I demand, when mankind were 
all yet of one language, all congregated in 
the plain of Shinar, were they then all under 
one monarch, who enjoyed the lord/hip of Adam 
by right defc ending to him ?• If they were not, 
there were then no thoughts, it is plain, of 
Adam's heir, no right to government known 
then upon that title ; no care taken, by God 
or man, of Adams fatherly authority* If 
when mankind were but one people, dwelt 
all together, and were of one language, and 
were upon building a city together ; and 
when it was plain, they could not but know 
the right heir, for Shem lived till Ifaac's time, 
a long while after the divifion at Babel-, if 
then, I fay, they were not under the mo- 
narchical government of Adam's fatherhood, 
by right defcending to the heir, it is plain 
there was no regard had to the fatherhood, 
no monarchy acknowledged due to Adam's 
heir, no empire of Shenis in Afa, and con-^ 
fequently no fuch divifion of the world by 
Noah, as our author has talked of. As far 
as we can conclude any thing from fcripture 
in this matter, it feems from this place, that 
if they had any government, it was rather a 
common-wealth than an abfolute monarchy : 
for the fcripture tells us, Gen. xi. 'They faid: 
it was not a prince commanded the building 
of this city and tower, it was not by the 
command of one monarch, but by the con- 
sultation of many, a free people ; let us build 
M 4 us 

1 68 Of Government. 

us : fy : they builc it for themfelves as 
i not as Haves for their lord and 

mater: ib we be not feathered abroad; having 
a cil x "• and fixed habitations to fettle 

or." - families* This was the con- 

fu! . 3 and defign of a people, that were 
at li ivij to part afunder, but defired to keep 
in one body, and could not have been either 
neceflarv or likelv in men tied together under 
the government of one monarch, who if they 
had been, as our author tells us, all JIaves 
under the abfolute dominion of a monarch, 
needed not have taken fuch care to hinder 
themfelves from wandering out of the reach 
of his dominion. I demand whether this 
be not plainer in fcripture than any thing 
of Adam's heir or fatherly authority f 

§. 147. But if being, as God fays, Gen. 
xi. 6. one people, they had one ruler, one 
king by natural right, abfolute and fupreme 
over them, what care had God to preferve the 
paternal authority of the fupreme fatherhood, if on 
a fudden he fuffer 72 (for fo many our author 
talks of) difinfl nations to be erected out of 
it, under diftinct. governors, and at once to 
withdraw themfelves from the obedience of 
their fovereign ? This is to intitle God's care 
how, and to what we pleafe. Can it be fenfe 
to fay, that God was careful to preferve the 
fatherly authority in thofe who had it not ? 
for if thefe were fubjects under a fupreme 
prince, what authority had they ? Was it an 


Of Government. 169 

inftance of God's care to preferve the fa- 
therly authority, when he took away the true 
fupreme fatherhood of the natural monarch ? 
Can it be reafon to fay, that God, for the 
prefervation of fatherly authority, lets feveral 
new governments with their governors ftart 
up, ""who could not all have fatherly autho- 
rity ? And is it not as much reafon to fay, 
that God is careful to deflroy fatherly autho- 
rity, when he fuffers one, who is in porTcffion 
of it, to have his government torn in pieces, 
and fhared by feveral of his fubjecls ? Would 
it not be an argument juft like this, for mo- 
narchical government, to fay, when any mo- 
narchy was mattered to pieces, and divided 
amongft revolted fubjecls, that God was care- 
ful to preferve monarchical power, by rending 
a fettled empire into a multitude of little 
governments ? If any one will fay, that what 
happens in providence to be preferved, God 
is careful to preferve as a thing therefore to 
be efteemed by men as necefTary or ufefal, it 
is a peculiar propriety of fpeech, which every 
one will not think fit to imitate : but this I am 
fure is impoflible to be either proper, or true 
fpeaking, that Shem, for example, (for he was 
then alive,) mould have fatherly authority, or 
fovereignty by right of fatherhood, over that 
one people at Babel, and that the next mo- 
ment, Shem yet living, 72 others mould have 
fatherly authority, or fovereignty by right of 
fatherhood, over the fame people, divided 


170 Of Government. 

into fo many diftinct governments : either 
thefe 72 fathers actually were rulers, juft 
before the confufion, and then they were not 
one people, but that God himfelf fays they 
were ; or elfe they were a common-wealth, 
and then where was monarchy ? or elfe thefe 
72 fathers had fatherly authority, but knew it 
not. Strange ! that fatherly authority mould 
be the only original of government amongft 
men, and yet all mankind not know it -, and 
ftranger yet, that the confufion of tongues 
fhould reveal it to them all of a fudden, that 
in an inftant thefe 72 fhould know that they 
had fatherly power, and all others know that 
they were to obey it in them, and every one 
know that particular jatherly authority to 
which he was a fubject. He that can think 
this arguing from fcripture, may from thence 
make out what model of an Eutopia will 
beft fuit with his fancy or intereft ; and this 
fatherhood, thus difpofed of, will juftify both 
a prince who claims an univerfal monarchy, 
and his fubjedts, who, being fathers of fa- 
milies, mall quit all fubje&ion to him, and 
canton his empire into lefs governments for 
themfelves ; for it will always remain a doubt 
in which of thefe the fatherly authority re- 
fided, till our author refolves us, whether 
Stem, who was then alive, or thefe 72 new 
princes, beginning fo many new empires in 
his dominions, and over his fubjects, had 
right to govern, fince our author tells us, 


Of Government. 171 

that both one and the other had fatherly, 
which is fupreme authority, and are brought 
in by him as inftances of thofe who did 
enjoy the lordfiips of Adam by right defending 
to them , which was as large and ample as the 
abfoluteft dominion of any monarch. This at 
leait is unavoidable, that if God was careful to 
preferve the fatherly authority, in the 72 new- 
er ebled nations, it necerTarily follows, that he 
was as careful to deflroy all pretences ot 
Adams heir ; fince he took care, and there- 
fore did preferve the fatherly authority in fo 
many, at leafl 71, that could not poffibly be 
Adams, heirs, when the right heir (if God 
had ever ordained any fuch inheritance) could 
not but be known, Shem then living, and they 
being all one people. 

§. 148. Nimrod is his next inftance of 
enjoying this patriarchal power, p. 16. but 
I know not for what reafon our author feems 
a little unkind to him, and fays, that he 
againjl right enlarged his empire, by feizing 
violently on the rights of other lords of families. 
Thefe lords of families here were called fa- 
thers of families, in his account of the dif- 
perlion at Babel : but it matters not how 
they were called, fo we know who they are ; 
for this fatherly authority muil be in them, 
either as heirs to Adam, and fo there could 
not be 72, nor above one at once; or elfe 
as natural parents over their children, and fo 
every father will have paternal authority over 


172 Of Government. 

his children by the fame right, and in as 
large extent as thofe 72 had, and fo be in- 
dependent princes over their own offspring. 
Taking his lords of families in this later 
fenfe, (as it is hard to give thofe words any 
other fenfe in this place) he gives us a very 
pretty account of the original of monarchy, 
in thefe following words, p. 16. And in this 
fenfe he may be faid to be the author andjoimder 
of monarchy, viz. As againft, right feizing 
violently on the rights of fathers over their 
children ; which paternal authority, if it be 
in them, by right of nature, (for elfe how 
could thofe 72 corne by it ?) no body can 
take from them without their own confents ; 
and then I defire our author and his friends 
to conlider, how far this will concern other 
princes, and whether it will not, according 
to his conclufion of that paragraph, refolve 
all regal power of thofe, whofe dominions 
extend beyond their families, either into 
tyranny and ufurpation, or election and con- 
fent of fathers of families, which will differ 
very little from confent of the people. 

§. 149. All his inftances, in the next 
fet~lion y p. 17. of the 12 dukes of Edom, the 
nine kings in a little corner of Afia in Abra- 
hams days, the 3 1 kings in Canaan deftroyed 
by Jofjua, and the care he takes to prove 
that thefe were all fovereign princes, and that 
every town in thofe days had a king, are fo 
many direct proofs againft him, that it was 
5 not 

Of Government. 173 

not the lordflnp of Adam by right defc ending 
to them, that made kings : for if they had 
held their royalties by that title, either there 
muft have been but one fovereign over them 
all, or elfe every father of a family had 
been as good a prince, and had as good 
a claim to royalty, as thefe : for if all 
the fons of Efau had each of them, the 
younger as well as the elder!:, the right of 
fatherhood, and fo were fovereign princes after 
their fathers death, the fame right had their 
,fons after them, and fo on to all pofterity ; 
which will limit all the natural power of 
fatherhood, only to be over the iffue of their 
own bodies, and their defcendents; which 
power of fatherhood dies with the head of 
each family, and makes way for the like power 
of fatherhood to take place in each of his 
fons over their refpective pofterities : whereby 
the power of fatherhood will be preferved 
indeed, and is intelligible, but will not be 
at all to our author's purpofe. None of the 
inftanees he brings are proofs of any power 
they had, as heirs of Adams paternal autho^ 
rity by the title of his fatherhood defcending 
to them ; no, nor of any power they had by 
virtue of their own : for Adam's fatherhood 
being over all mankind, it could defcend but 
to one at once, and from him to his right 
heir only, and fo there could by that title 
be but one king in the world at a time : 
and by right of fatherhood, not defcending' 
from Adam, it muft be only as they them- 


1 74 O F Government 

felves were fathers, and fo could be over none 
but their own posterity. So that if thofe 12 
dukes of Edom ; if Abraham and the nine kings 
his neighbours 5 if Jacob and E/2z#, and the 
31 kings in Canaan, the 72 kings mutilated 
by Adonibefeck, the 32 kings that came to 
Benhadad, the 70 kings of Greece making 
war at Troy, were, as our author contends, 
all of them fovereign princes ; it is evident 
that kings derived their power from fome 
other original than fatherhood, fincc fome of 
thefe had power over mure than their own 
posterity ; and it is demonstration, they could 
not be all heirs to Adam : for I challenge any 
man to make any pretence to power by right 
of fatherhood, either intelligible or poflible in 
any one, other wife, than either as Adam's 
heir, or as progenitor over his own depend- 
ents, naturally fprung from him. And if 
our author could mew that any one of thefe 
princes, of which he gives us here fo large a 
catalogue, had his authority by either of thefe 
titles, I think I might yield him the caufe ; 
though it is manifeft they are all impertinent, 
and directly contrary to what he brings them 
to prove, viz. That the lordfiip which Adam 
had over the world by right defcended to the 

§. 150. Having told us, p. 16, That the 
patriarchal government continued in Abraham, 
Ifaac, and Jacob, until the Egyptian bondage, 
p. 17. he tells us, By maaifejl footfieps we 
may trace this paternal government unto the 
3 Ifraelites 

Of Government. 17$ 

Ifraelites coming into Egypt, 'where the exercife 
of fupreme patriarchal government was inter- 
mitted, becaufe they were in JubjeSlion to a 
fironger prince. What thefe footfteps are of 
paternal government, in our author's fenfe, 
i. e. of abfolute monarchical power defcending 
from Adam, and exercifed by right of fa- 
therhood, we have feen, that is for 2290 years 
no footfteps at all ; fince in all that time he 
cannot produce any one example of any per- 
fon who claimed or exercifed regal authority 
by right of fatherhood; or mew any one who 
being a king was Adams heir : all that his 
proofs amount to, is only this, that there 
were fathers, patriarchs and kings, in that 
age of the world; but that the fathers and 
patriarchs had any abfolute arbitrary power, 
or by what titles thofe kings had their's, and 
of what extent it was, the fcripture is wholly 
filent; it is manifeft by right of fatherhood 
they neither did, nor could claim any title 
to dominion and empire. 

§. 151. To fay, that the exercife of fupreme 
patriarchal government was intermitted, becaufe 
they were in fubjeclion to a fironger prince, proves 
nothing but what I before fufpetted, viz. 
That patriarchal jurifdiclion or government is a 
fallacious expreftion, and does not in our au- 
thor fignify (what he would yet iniinuate by 
it) paternal and regal power, fuch an abfolute 
fovereignty as he fuppofes was in Adam. 

§. 152. 

176 Of Government. 

§. 152. For how can he fay that patriarchal 
jurifdiclion was intermitted in Egypt, where 
there was a king, under whofe regal go- 
vernment the Ifraelites were, if patriarchal 
were abfolnte mo?2archical jurifdiclion ? And if 
it were not, but fomething elfe, why does 
he make fuch ado about a power not in quef- 
tion, and nothing to the purpofe ? The exer- 
cife of patriarchal jurifdiclion, if patriarchal 
be regal, was not intermitted whilft the Is- 
raelites were in Egypt. It is true, the exer- 
cife of regal power was not then in the hands 
of any of the promifed feed of Abraham, nor 
before neither that I know ; but what is 
that to the intermirlion of regal authority, as 
defcending from Adam, unlefs our author will 
have it, that this chofen line of Abraham had 
the right of inheritance to Adams lordmip ? 
and then to what purpofe are his inftances of 
the 72 rulers, in whom the fatherly authority 
waspreferved in the confufion ^.t Babel? Why 
does he bring the 12 princes fons of Ifmael-, 
and the dukes of Edom, and join them with 
Abraham, Ifaac, and Jacob, as examples of the 
exercife of true patriarchal government, if the 
exercife of patriarchal jurifdiclion were inter- 
mitted in the world, whenever the heirs of 
Jacob had not fupreme power ? I fear, fu- 
preme patriarchal jurifdiclion was not only in- 
termitted, but from the time of the Egyptian 
bondage quite loft in the world, fince it will 


Of Government. 177 

be hard to find, from that time downwards, 
any one who exercifed it as an inheritance 
descending to him from the patriarchs Abra- 
ham, Ifaac, and "Jacob. I imagined monar- 
chical government would have ferved his 
turn in the hands of Pharaoh, or any body. 
But one cannot eafily difcover in all places 
what his difcourfe tends to, as particularly in 
this place it is not obvious to guefs what he 
drives at, when he fays, the exercife of fu- 
preme patriarchal ' jurifdiBion in Egypt, or how 
this ferves to make out the defcent of Adam's 
lordfhip to the patriarchs, or any body elfe. 

§. 153. For I thought he had been giving 
us out of fcripture, proofs and examples of 
monarchical government, founded on pater- 
nal authority, defcending from Adam ; and 
not an hiftory of the Jews : amongft whom 
yet we find no kings, till many years after 
they were a people : and when kings were 
their rulers, there is not the leaft mention or 
room for a pretence that they were heirs to 
Adam, or kings by paternal authority. I ex- 
pected, talking fo much as he does of fcrip- 
ture, that he would have produced thence a 
feries of monarchs, whofe titles were clear 
to Adam s fathei'hood, and who, as heirs to 
him, owned and exercifed paternal juris- 
diction over their fubjects, and that this was 
the true patriarchical government; whereas 
he neither proves, that the patriarchs were 
kings j nor that either kings or patriarchs 

N were 

178 Of Government. 

were heirs to Adam, or fo much as pretended 
to it : and one may as well prove, that the 
patriarchs were all abfolute monarchs j that the 
power both of patriarchs and kings was only 
paternal ; and that this power defcended to 
them from Adam : I fay all thefe proportions 
may be as well proved by a confufed account 
of a multitude of little kings in the Weft- 
Indies, out of Ferdinando Soto, or any of our 
late hiftories of the Northern America, or by 
our author's 70 kings of Greece, out of Ho- 
mer, as by any thing he brings out of fcrip- 
ture, in that multitude of kings he has 
reckoned up. 

§. 154. And methinks he fhould have let 
Homer and his wars of Troy alone, iince hi& 
great zeal to truth or monarchy carried him 
to fuch a pitch of tranfport againft philofo- 
phers and poets, that he tells us in his pre- 
face, that there are too many in thefe days, who 
fleaje themfehes in running after the opinions 
of.philofophers and poets, to find out fuch an 
original of government, as might pro??iife them 
fame title to liberty, to the great fcandal of 
Chri/lianity, and bringing in of at h elfin. And 
yet thefe heathens, philofopher Ariftotle, and 
poet Homer, are not rejected by our zealous 
Christian politician, whenever they offer any 
thing that feems to ferve his turn ; whether 
to the great fcandal ^Chriftianity and bringing 
in of atheifm, let him look. This I cannot 
but obferve, in authors who it is vifible write 


Of Government. 179 

not for truth, how ready zeal for interest and 
party is to entitle Chrijlianity to their de- 
iigns, and to charge atheifm on thofe who 
will not without examining fubmit to their 
doctrines, and blindly fwallow their non- 

But to return to his fcripture hiftory, our 
author farther tells us, p. 18. that after the 
return of the Ifraelites out ^bondage, God, out 
of a fpecial care of them, chofe iVTofes and 
Jofhua fuccejjively to govern as princes in the 
place and Jiead of the fupreme fathers. If it 
be true, that they returned out of bondage, it 
mull be into a ftate of freedom, and mufl 
imply, that both before and after this bonclage 
they were free, unlefs our author will fay, 
that changing of mailers is returning out of 
bondage ; or that a ilave returns out of bondage, 
when he is removed from one gaily to ano- 
ther. If then they returned out of bondage, 
it is plain that in thofe days, whatever our 
author in his preface fays to the contrary, 
there were difference between 2.fon, zfubjecl, 
and a Jlave ; and that neither the patriarchs 
before, nor their rulers after this Egyptian 
bondage, numbered their fons or fubjecls amongfi 
their pofefpons, and difpofed of them with as 
abfolute a dominion, as they did their other 

§. 155. This is evident in Jacob, to whom 
Reuben offered his two fons as pledges ; and 
Judah was at laft furety for Benjami?i$ fafe 

N 2 return 

1S0 Of Government. 

return out of Egypt: which all had been 
vain, fuperfluous, and but a fort of mockery, 
if facob had had the fame power over every- 
one of his family, as he had over his ox or 
his afs, as an owner over his fubfiance ; and 
the offers that Reuben or jfudab made had 
been fuch a fecurity for returning of Benja- 
min, as if a man mould take two lambs out 
of his lord's flock, and offer one as fecurity, 
that he will fafely reftore the other. 

§. 156. When they were out of this bon- 
dage, what then ? God out of a fpecial care of 
them, the Ifraelites. It is well that once in his 
book he will allow God to have any care of 
the people ; for in other places he fpeaks of 
mankind, as if God had no care of any part 
of them, but only of their monarch s, and 
that the reft: of the people, the focieties of 
men, were made as fo many herds of cattle, 
only for the fervice, ufe, and pleafure of their 

§. 157. Chofe Mofes and Jofhua fuccejjively 
to govern as princes ; a fhrewd argument our 
author has found out to prove God's care of 
the fatherly authority, and Adams heirs, that 
here, as an expreffion of his care of his own 
people, he choofes thofe for princes over 
them, that had not the lead: pretence to either. 
The perfons chofen were, Mofes of the tribe 
of Levi, and fofoua of the tribe of Ephraim, 
neither of which had any title of fatherhood. 
But fays our author, they were in the place 


Of Government. i$i 

and flead of the fupreme fathers. If God 
had any where as plainly declared his choice 
of fuch fathers to be rulers, as he did 
of Mofes and JoJJjua, we might believe 
Mofes and fofiua were in their place and 
Jiead: but that being the queftion in debate, 
till that be better proved, Mofes being chofen 
by God to be ruler of his people, will no 
more prove that government belonged to 
Adams heir, or to the fatherhood, than God's 
choofing Aaron of the tribe of Levi to be 
prieft, will prove that the priefthood belonged 
to Adam's heir, or the prime fathers ; fince 
God would choofe Aaron to be prieft, and 
Mofes ruler in Ifrael, though neither of thofe 
offices were fettled on Adam's heir, or the 

§. 158. Our author goes on, and after them 
likewife for a time he r a fed up judges, to defend 
his people in time of peril, p. 18. This proves 
fatherly authority to be the original of go- 
vernment, and that it defcended from Adam 
to his heirs* juft as well as what went be- 
fore : only here our author feems to confefs, 
that thefe judges, who were all the governors 
they then had, were only men of valour, 
whom they made their generals to defend 
them in time of peril; and cannot God 
raife up fuch men, unlefs fatherhood have a 
title to government ? 

But fays our author, when God gave the Is- 
raelites kings, he re-eflabliflded the ancient and 

N 3 prime 

182 Of Government. 

prime right of lineal fuccejjion to paternal go- 
vernment, p. 1 8. 

§. 1 60. How did God re-eftablijh it ? by 
a law, a pofitive command ? We find no fuch 
thing. Our author means then, that when 
God gave them a king, in giving them a 
king, he r:-ejlablijl:ed the right, &c. To re- 
eflablifh de Jaclo the right of lineal fucceffion 
to paternal government, is to put a man in 
poffeffion of that government which his 
fathers did enjoy, and he by lineal fucceffion 
had a right to : for, firft, if it were another 
government than what his anceflors had, it 
was not fucceeding to an ancient right, but 
beginning a new one : for if a prince mould 
give a man, belides his antient patrimony, 
which for ibme ages his family had been 
diffeized of, an additional eflate, never before 
in the poffeffion of his anceflors, he could 
not be faidto re-ejlablifo the right of lineal fuc- 
ceffion to any more than what had been 
formerly enjoyed by his anceflors. If there- 
fore the power the kings of Ifrael had, were 
any thing more than Ifaac or Jacob had, it 
was net the re-efiablifing in them the right 
of fucceffion to a power, but giving them a 
new power, however you pleafe to call it, 
paternal or not : and whether Ifaac and Jacob 
had the fame power that the kings of Ifrael 
had, I delire any one, by what has been above 
iaid, to confider 3 and I do not think they 


Of Government. 183 

will find, that either Abraham, Ifaac, or 
"Jacob, had any regal power at all. 

§. 161. Next, there can be no re-eftablijh- 
merit of the prime and ancient right of lineal 
fiicceffion to any thing, unlefs he, that is put 
in pofieffion of it, has the right to fucceed, 
and be the true and next heir to him he 
fucceeds to. Can that be a re-eftablifhment, 
which begins in a new family ? or that the 
re-eft abUJJjment of an ancient right of lineal fuc- 
cefion, when a crown is given to one, who 
has no right of fiicceffion to it, and who, if 
the lineal fucceffion had gone on, had been 
out of all poffibility of pretence to it ? Saul, 
the firft king God gave the Ifraelites, was 
of the tribe of Benjamin. Was the ancient and 
prime right of lineal fuccejjion re-ejlablijhed in 
him ? The next was David, the youngeil fon 
of Jefje, of the pofterity of Judah, Jacob's 
third fon. Was the ancient and prime right 
of lineal fuccejjion to paternal government re- 
tftablified in him ? or in Solomon, his younger 
fon and fuccefibr in the throne ? or in J ere- 
boam over the ten tribes ? or in Athaliah, a 
woman who reigned fix years an utter fixanger 
to the royal blood ? If the ancient and prime 
right of lineal fuccejjion to paternal government 
were re-ejlablified in any of thefe or their 
pofterity, the ancient and prime right oj' lineal 
fuccejjion to paternal government belongs to 
younger brothers as well as elder, and may 
be re-eftabliihed in any man living ; for what- 
N 4 ever 

184 Of Government. 

ever younger brothers, by ancient and prime 
right of lineal Juccejjion, may have as well as 
the elder, that every man living may have a 
right to, by lineal fucceflion, and Sir Robert 
as well as any other. And fo what a brave 
right of lineal fucceflion, to his paternal or 
regal government, our author has re-ejia- 
blijhedj for the fecuring the rights and inhe- 
ritance of crowns, where every one may have 
it, let the world confider. 

§. 162. But fays our author however, p. 19. 
Whenjoever God made choice of any fpecial per Jon 
to be king, he intended that the ijfue alfo fiould 
have benefit thereof as being comprehended Juf- 
ficiently in the perfon of the father, altho' the 
father was only named in the grant. This yet 
will apt help out fucceflion ; for if, as our 
author fays, the benefit of the grant be in- 
tended to the ijfue of the grantee, this will 
not direct the fucceflion -, fince, if God give 
any thing to a man and his ijfue in general, 
the claim cannot be to any one of that ijfue 
in particular ; every one that is of his race 
will have an equal right. If it be faid, our 
author meant heir, I believe our author was 
as willing as any body to have ufed that 
word, if it would have ferved his turn : but 
Solomon, who fucceeded David in the throne, 
being no more his heir than Jerobobam, who 
fucceeded him in the government of the ten 
tribes, was his iflue, our author had reafon 
to avoid faying, That God intended it to 


Of Government. 185 

the heirs, when that would not hold in a 
fucceffion, which our author could not ex- 
cept againft ; and fo he has left his fuccetTion 
as undetermined, as if he had faid nothing 
about it : for if the regal- power be given by 
God to a man and his iffue, as the land of 
Canaan was to Abraham and his feed, mud 
they not all have a title to it, all mare in it ? 
And one may as well fay, that by God's grant 
to Abraham and his feed, the land of Canaan 
was to belong only to one of his feed ex- 
clulive of all others, as by God's grant of 
dominion to a man and his iffite, this domi- 
nion was to belong in peculiar to one of his 
ijfue exclufive of all others. 

§. 163. But how will our author prove that 
whenfoever God made choice of any fpecial 
perfon to be a king, he intended that the (I 
fuppofe he means his) ijfue aljo Jloould have 
benefit thereof? has he fo foon forgot Mofes 
and Jojhua, whom in this very fecJion, he 
fays, God out of a jpecial care choje to govern 
as princes, and the judges that God railed 
up ? Had not thefe princes, having the au- 
thority of the jupreme fatherhood, the fame 
power that the kings had ; and being fpe- 
cially chofen by God himfelf, mould not 
their ijfue have the benefit of that choice, as 
well as David's or Solomons ? If thefe had the 
paternal authority put into their hands im- 
mediately by God, why had not their ijfue 
the benefit of this grant in a fucceffion to - 


i£6 Of Government. 

this power ? or if they had it as Adams heirs, 
why did not their heirs enjoy it after them 
by right defcending to them ? for they could 
not be heirs to one another. Was the power 
the fame, and from the fame original, in 
Mofes, fofiua and the 'Judges, as it was in 
David and the Kings j and was it inheritable 
in one, and not in the other ? If it was not 
paternal authority, then God's own people 
were governed by thofe that had not -paternal 
authority, and thofe governors did well 
enough without it : if it were paternal au." 
thority, and God chofe the perfons that were 
to exercife it, our author's rule fails, that 
whenfoever God makes choice ef any per/on to be 
reme ruler (for I fuppofe the name king 
has no fpell in it, it is not the title, but the 
power makes the difference) he intends that 
the ijjiie alfo Jhould have the benefit of it, fince 
from their coming out of Egypt to David's 
time, 400 years, the iffue was never fo fuf- 
ficie'ntly comprehended in the per/on of the fa- 
ther, as that any fon, after the death of his 
father, fucceeded to the government amongft 
all thofe judges that judged Ifrael. If, to 
avoid this, it be faid, God always chofe the 
perfon of the fucceffor, and fo, transferring 
the fatherly authority to him, excluded his 
iffue from fucceeding to it, that is manifeftly 
not fo in the ftory of Jephtha, where he ar- 
ticled with the people, and they made him 
judge over them, as is plain, judg. 11. 

§. 164. 

Of Government. 187 

§. 164. It is in vain then to fay, that when* 
Jbever God choofes any fpecial ferfon to have the 
exercife of paternal authority, (for if that be 
not to be king, I deftre to know the dif- 
ference between a king and one having the 
exercife of paternal authority] he intends the 
iffue alfo fiould have the benefit of it, fince we 
find the authority, the judges had, ended 
with them, and defcended not to their iffue ; 
and if the judges had not paternal authority, 
I fear it will trouble our author, or any of the 
friends to his principles, to tell who. had then 
the paternal authority, that is, the government 
and fupreme power amongft. the Israelites $ 
and 1 fufpect they muft confefs that the 
chofen people of God continued a people 
feveral hundreds of years, without any know- 
ledge or thought of this paternal authority, 
or any appearance of monarchical govern- 
ment at all. 

§. 165. To be fatisfied of this, he need 
but read the ftory of the Levite, and the war 
thereupon with the Benjamites, in the three 
laft chapters of Judges; and when he finds, that 
the Levite appeals to the people for juftice 
that it was the tribes and the congregation, 
that debated, refolved, and directed all that 
was done on that occafion j he muft con- 
clude, either that God was not careful to pre- 
ferve the fatherly authority amongft his own 
chofen people ; or elfc that the fatherly au- 
thority may be preferved, where there is no 


1 88 Of Government. 

monarchical government : if the latter, then 
it will follow, that though fatherly authority 
be never fo well proved, yet it will not infer 
a necefiity of monarchical government; if 
the former, it will feem very ftrange and 
improbable, that God fhould ordain fatherly 
authority to be fo facred amongft the fons of 
men, that there could be no power, or go- 
vernment without it, and yet that amongft 
his own people, even whilft he is providing 
a government for them, and therein prefcribes 
rules to the feveral flates and relations of 
men, this great and fundamental one, this 
mod material and necefTary of all the reft, 
mould be concealed, and lie neglected for 
400 years after. 

§. 166. Before I leave this, I muft afk how 
our author knows that whenfoever God makes 
choice of any fpecial perfon to be king> he intends 
that the iffue fhould have the benefit thereof? 
Does God by the law of nature or revelation 
fay fo ? By the fame law alfo he muft fay, 
which of his iffue muft enjoy the crown in 
fucceiTion, and fo point out the heir, or elfe 
leave his iffue to divide or fcramble for the 
government : both alike abfurd, and fuch as 
will deftroy the benefit of fuch grant to the 
iffue. When any fuch declaration of God's 
intention is produced, it will be our duty to 
believe God intends it fo ; but till that bs 
done, our author muft fhew us fome better 
warrant, before we fhall be obliged to re- 

Of Government. 189 

ccive him as the authentic revealer of God's 

§. 167. The iffue, fays our author, is com- 
prehended fufficieiitly in the perfon of the fa- 
ther, although the father only was named in the 
grant : and yet God, when he gave the land 
of Canaan to Abraham, Gen. xiii. 15. thought 
fit to put his feed into the grant too : fo the 
priefthood was given to Aaron and his feed*, 
and the crown God gave not only to David, 
but his feed alfo : and however our author 
affures us that God intends, that the if lie Jhould 
have the benefit of it, when he choofes any perfon 
to be king, yet we fee that the kingdom 
which he gave to Saul, without mentioning 
his feed after him, never came to any of his 
iffue ; and why, when God chofe a perfon to 
be king, he mould intend, that his iffue 
fhould have the benefit of it, more than when 
he chofe one to be judge in Ifrael, I would 
fain know a reafon ; or why does a grant of 
fatherly authority to a king more comprehend 
the iffue, than when a like grant is made to 
a judge ? Is paternal authority by right to 
defcend to the iffue of one, and not of the 
other ? There will need fome reafon to be 
Ihewn of this difference, more than the 
name, when the thing given is the fame fa- 
therly authority, and the manner of giving it, 
God's choice of the perfon, the fame too ; 
for I fuppofe our author, when he fays, God 


1 90 Of Government. 

raifed up judges, will by no means allow, they 
were chofen by the people. 

§. 1 68. But fince our author has Co con- 
fidently aflured us of the care of God to pre- 
ferve the fatherhood, and pretends to build 
all he fays upon the authority of the fcrip- 
ture, we may well expect that that people, 
whofe law, constitution and hiflory is chiefly 
contained in the fcripture, fhould furnifh him 
with the cleared inftances of God's care of 
preferving the fatherly authority, in that 
people who it is agreed he had a mofl pecu- 
liar care of. Let us fee then what flate this 
paternal authority or government was in 
among!! the fews, from their beginning to 
be a people. It was omitted, by our author's 
confefiion, from their coming into Egypt, till 
their return out of that bondage, above 200 
years : from thence till God gave the If- 
raellies a king, about 400 years more, our 
author gives but a very (lender account of it; 
nor indeed all that time are there the leafl 
footfleps of paternal or regal government 
amongft them. But then fays our author, 
God re-ejlablifoed the ancient and prime right 
of lineal jtic cefjion to paternal government. 

§. 169. What a lineal face effion to paternal 
government was then eitablifhed, we have 
already feen. I only now confider how long 
this lafted, and that was to their captivity, 
about 500 years : from thence to their de- 
duction by the Romans, above 650 years 
4 after, 

Of Government. 191 

after, the ancient and prime right of lineal 
fuccefjion to paternal government was again 
loft, and they continued a people in the pi'o- 
mifed land without it. So that of 1750 
years that they were God's peculiar people, 
they had hereditary kingly government 
amongft them not one third of the time ; 
and of that time there is not the leaft footftep 
of one moment of paternal government, nor 
the re-eflablijhment of the ancient and prime 
right of lineal fucce/jion to it, whether we 
fuppofe it to be derived, as from its fountain, 
from David, Saul, Abraham, or, which upon 
our author's principles is the only true, from 




Chap. I. §. i. It having been fhewn in the 
foregoing difcourfe, 

i. That Adam had not, either by natural 
right of fatherhood, or by pofitive donation 
from God, any fuch authority over his 
children, or dominion over the world, as is 
pretended : 

2. That if he had, his heirs, yet, had no 
right to it : 

3. That if his heirs had, there being no 
law of nature nor pofitive law of God that 
determines which is the right heir in all 
cafes that may arife, the right of fucceffion, 
and confequently of bearing rule, could not 
have been certainly determined : 

4. That if even that had been determined, 
yet the knowledge of which is the elded line 

O of- 

194 Of Civil-Government. 
of Adam's pofterity, being fo long fince utterly 
loft, that in the races of mankind and fa- 
milies of the world, there remains not to one 
above another, the leaft pretence to be the 
eldeft houfe, and to have the right of inhe- 
ritance : 

All thefe premifes having, as I think, been 
clearly made out, it is impoflible that the 
rulers now on earth mould make any be- 
nefit, or derive any the lead: madow of au- 
thority from that, which is held to be the 
fountain of all power, Adams private dominion 
and paternal jurifdiciion j fo that he that will 
not give juft occafion to think that all go- 
vernment in the world is the product only of 
force and violence, and that men live together 
by no other rules but that of beafts, where the 
ftrongeft carries it, and fo lay a foundation 
for perpetual diforder and mifchief, tumult, 
fedition and rebellion, (things that the fol- 
lowers of that hypothecs fo loudly cry out mull of neceffity find out another 
rife of governwent, another original of poli-r 
tical power, and another way of defigning 
and knowing the perfons that have it, than 
what Sir Robert Filmer hath taught us. 

§. 2. To this purpofe, I think it may not 
be amifs, to fet down what I take to be poli- 
tical power ; that the power of a magijlrate 
over a fubject may be diftinguifhed from 
that of a father over his children, a ?najier 
over his fervant, a hnjband over his wife, and 


Of Civil-Government. 195 

a lord over his flave. All which diftindt 
powers happening fometimes together in the 
fame man, if he be confidered under thefe 
different relations, it may help us to diiKn- 
guifh thefe powers one from another, and 
ihew the difference betwixt a ruler of a 
common-wealth, a father of a family, and a 
captain of a galley. 

§.3. Political power, then, I take to be a 
right of making laws with penalties of death, 
and confequently all lefs penalties, for the 
regulating and preferving of property, and of 
employing the force of the community, in 
the execution of fuch laws, and in the de- 
fence of the common-wealth from foreign 
injury ; and all this only for the public good. 


Of the State of Nature. 

§.4. r a ^ O underftand political power 
right, and derive it from its 
original, we muft confider, what flate all 
men are naturally in, and that is, a fate of 
perfect freedom to order their actions, and 
difpofe of their poffeffions and perfons, as 
they think fit, within the bounds of the law 
of nature, without afking leave, or depending 
upon the will of any other man. 

A fate alfo of equality, wherein all the 
power and jurifdicticn is reciprocal, no one , 
O 2 having 

196 Of Civil-Government. 

having more than another ; there being no- 
thing more evident, than that creatures of 
the fame fpecies and rank, promifcuoufly born 
to all the fame advantages of nature, and 
the ufe of the fame faculties, fhould alfo be 
equal one amongft another without fubor- 
dination or fubjeclion, unlefs the lord and 
mafter of them all mould, by any manifeft 
declaration of his will, fet one above another, 
and confer on him, by an evident and clear 
appointment, an undoubted right to dominion 
and fovereignty. 

§. 5. This equality of men by nature, the 
judicious Hooker looks upon as fo evident in 
itfelf, and beyond all queftion, that he makes 
it the foundation of that obligation to mu- 
tual love amongft men, on which he builds 
the duties they owe one another, and from 
whence he derives the great maxims of jujiice 
and charity. His words are, 

The like natural inducement hath brought 
men to know that it is no lefs their duty, to 
love others than themf elves; for feeing thofe 
things which are equal, mujl needs all have one 
wieafure ; if I cannot but wifi to receive good, 
even as much at every mans hands, as any man 
can wijh unto his own foul, how Jhould I look 
to have any part of my defre herein fatisfed, 
unlefs myfelf be careful to fatify the like defre, 
which is undoubtedly i?i other men, being of one 
and the fame nature ? To have any thing offered 
them repugnant to this defre, mujl needs in all 


Of Civil-Government. 197 

rejpecls grieve them as much as me -, fo that if 
I do harm, I muji look to fuffer, there being 
no reafon that others Jhould Jhew greater mea- 
fure of love to me, than they have by me /hewed 
unto them ; my defre therefore to be loved of 
my equals in nature, as much as pofjible may 
be, impofeth upon me a natural duty of bearing 
to t hem-ward fully the like affeBion ; from 
which relation of equality between ourfehes and 
them that are as ourfehes, what feveral rules 
and canons natural reafon hath drawn, for 
direction of life, no man is ignorant ■*■ Bccl. Pol. 
Lib. 1. 

§. 6. But though this be a fate of liberty, 

yet // is not a fate of licence : though man in 

that ftate have an uncontroulable liberty to 

difpofe of his perfon or porTeflions, yet he has 

not liberty to deftroy himfelf, or fo much as 

any creature in his porTeflion, but where 

fome nobler ufe than its bare prefervation 

calls for it. The fate of nature has a law of 

nature to govern it, which obliges every one : 

and reafon, which is that law, teaches all 

mankind, who will but confult it, that being 

all equal and independent, no one ought to 

harm another in his life, health, liberty, or 

pofleffions : for men being all the workman- 

Ihip of one omnipotent, and infinitely wife 

maker ; all the fervants of one fovereign 

mafter, fent into the world by his order, and 

about his bulinefs; they are his property, 

whofe workmanfhip they are, made to laft 

O 3 during; 

198 Of Civil-Government. 
during his, not one another's pleafure: and 
being furnifhed with like faculties, maring all 
in one community of nature, there cannot 
be fuppofed any fuch jub ordination among us, 
that may authorize us to deftroy one another, 
as if we were made for one another's ufes, as 
the inferior rafiks of creatures are for our's. 
Every one, as he is bound to preferve himfelf, 
and not to quit his flation wilfully, fo by the 
like reafon, when his own preservation comes 
not in competition, ought he, as much as he 
can, to preferve the reft of mankind, and may 
not, unleis it be to do juftice on an offender, 
take away, or impair the life, or what tends 
to the prefervation of the life, the liberty, 
health, limb, or*gcods of another. 

§. 7. And that all men may be restrained 
from invading others rights, and from doing 
hurt to one another, and the law of nature 
be obferved, which willeth the peace and 
prefervation of all mankind, the execution of 
the law of nature is, in that ftate, put into 
every man's hands, whereby every one has a 
right to punifh the tranfgrefTors of that law 
to fuch a degree, as may hinder its violation : 
for the law of nature would, as all other laws 
that concern men in this world, be in vain, 
if there were no body that in the ftate of 
nature had a power to execute that law, and 
thereby preferve the innocent and reftrain 
offenders. And if anyone in the ftate of na- 
ture may punifh another for any evil he has 
4 done, 

Of Civil-Government. 199 

done, every one may do fo : for m that Jlate 
of p erf eft equality, where naturally there is 
no fuperiority or jurifdiction of one over 
another, what any may do in profecution of 
that law, every one mull: needs have a right 
to do. 

§. 8. And thus, in the ilate of nature, one 
man comes by a power over a?iother ; but yet 
no abfolute or arbitrary power, to ufe a 
criminal, when he has got him in his hands, 
according to the paffionate heats, or boundlefs 
extravagancy of his own will ; but only to 
retribute to him, fo far as calm reafon and 
confcience dictate, what is proportionate t© 
his tranfgreffion, which is fo much as may 
ferve for reparation and restraint : for thefe 
two are the only reafons, why one man may 
lawfully do harm to another, which is that 
we call punifhrnent. In tranfgreffing the law 
of nature, the offender declares himfelf to 
live by another rule than that of reafon 
and common equity, which is that meafure 
God has fet to the actions of men, for their 
mutual fecurity j and fo he becomes dan- 
gerous to mankind, the tye, which is to 
fecure them from injury and violence, being 
flighted and broken by him. Which being 
a trefpafs againfl: the whole fpecies, and the 
peace and fafety of it, provided for by the 
law of nature, every man Cipon this fcore, 
by the right he hath to preferve mankind in 
general, may reftrain, or where it is necef- 

O 4 fary,' 

200 Of Civil-Government. 
fary, deftroy things noxious to them, and fo 
rnay bring fuch evil on any one, who hath 
tranfgreffed that law, as may make him re- 
pent the doing of it, and thereby deter him, 
and by his example others, from doing the 
like mifchief. And in this cafe, and upon 
this ground, every ?na?i hath a right to punifi 
the offender, and be executioner of the law of 

§. 9. I doubt not but this will feem a very 
flrange doctrine to fome men : but before 
they condemn it, I defire them to refolve 
me, by what right any prince or ftate can 
put to death, or punifh an alien, for any crime 
he commits in their country. It is certain 
their laws, by virtue of any fanclion they 
receive from the promulgated will of the 
legiflative, reach not a ftranger : they fpeak 
not to him, nor, if they did, is he bound to 
hearken to them. The legiflative authority, 
by which they are in force over the fubjec~ts 
of that common-wealth, hath no power over 
him. Thofe who have the fupreme power 
of making laws in England, France or Holland, 
are to an Indian, but like the reft of the 
world, men without authority : and there- 
fore, if by the law of nature every man 
hath not a power to punifh offences againft 
it, as he foberly judges the cafe to require, 
I fee not how the magistrates of any com- 
munity can funijh an alien of another coun- 
try ; fince, in reference to him, they can have 


Of Civil-Government. 201 

no more power than what every man na- 
turally may have over another. 

§. 10. Beiides the crime which confifts in 
violating the law, and varying from the right 
rule of reafon, whereby a man fo far be- 
comes degenerate, and declares himfelf to 
quit the principles of human nature, and to be 
a noxious creature, there is commonly injury 
done to fome perfon or other, and fome other 
man receives damage by his tranfgrerlion : in 
which cafe he who hath received any damage, 
has, befides the right of punifhment common 
to him with other men, a particular right to 
feek reparation from him that has done it : 
and any other perfon, who finds it juft, may 
alfo join with him that is injured, and afTifl 
him in recovering from the offender fo much 
as may make fatisfaction for the harm he has 

§. ii. From thefe two dijlindi rights, the 
one of ' punijhing the crime for reflraint, and 
preventing the like offence, which right of 
punifhing is in every body ; the other of 
taking reparation, which belongs only to the 
injured party, comes it to pafs that the ma- 
giftrate, who by being magiftrate hath the 
common right of punifhing put into his 
hands, can often, where the public good 
demands not the execution of the law, remit 
the punifhment of criminal offences by his 
own authority, but yet cannot remit the fa- 
tisfaction due to any private man for the 


202 Of Civil-Government. 

damage he has received. That, he who has 
fuffered the damage has a right to demand 
in his own name, and he alone can remit : 
the damnified perfon has this power of ap- 
propriating to himfelf the goods or fervicc 
of the offender, by right of felf-prefervation, 
as ev^ery man has a power to punifh the 
crime, to prevent its being committed again, 
by the right he has of preferring all mankind, and 
doing all reafonable things he can in order 
to that end : and thus it is, that every man, 
in the ftate of nature, has a power to kill a 
murderer, both to deter others from doing 
the like injury, which no reparation can 
compenfate, by the example of the punifh- 
ment that attends it from every body, and 
alfo to fecure men from the attempts of a 
criminal, who having renounced reafon, the 
common rule and meafure God hath given 
to mankind, hath, by the unjuft violence and 
Haughter he hath committed upon one, de- 
clared war againft all mankind, and there- 
fore may be deftroyed as a lion or a tyger, 
one of thofe wild favage beafts, with whom 
men can have no fociety nor fecurity : and 
noon this is grounded that great law of na- 
ture, Wbofo jheddetb mans blood, by man fhall 
his blood be fed. And Cain was fo fully con- 
vinced, that every one had a right to deilroy 
fuch a criminal, that after the murder of 
his brother, he cries out, Every one thatfndeth 


Of Civil-Government. 203 

me, jhall fiay ?ne\ fo plain was it writ in the 
hearts of all mankind. 

§. 12. By the fame reafon may a man in 
the Itate of nature punijh the leffer breaches 
of that law. It will perhaps be demanded, 
with death ? I anfwer, each tranfgreffion ma^' 
be punijhed to that degree, and with fo m>Bch 
feverity, as will fuffice to make it an ill 
bargain to the offender, give him caufe to 
repent, and terrify others from doing the 
like. Every offence, that can be committed 
in the ftate of nature, may in the ftate of 
nature be alfo puniftied equally, and as far 
forth as it may, in a common-wealth : for 
though it would be befides my prefent pur- 
pofe, to enter here into the particulars of the 
law of nature, or its meafures of puntjhment ; 
yet, it is certain there is fuch a law, and that 
too, as intelligible and plain to a rational 
creature, and a ftudier of that law, as the 
pofitive laws of common- wealths ; nay, pof- 
iibly plainer ; as much as reafon is eafier to 
be understood, than the fancies and intricate 
contrivances of men, following contrary and 
hidden interests put into words ; for fo truly 
are a great part of the municipal laws' of coun- 
tries, which are only fo far right, as they are 
founded on the law of nature, by which they 
are to be regulated and interpreted. 

§.13. To this flrange doctrine, viz. That 
in the Ji ate of nature every one has the executive 
power of the law of nature, I doubt not but it 


204 ^ F Civil-Government. 
will be objected, that it is unreafonable for men 
to be judges in their own cafes, that felf-lovc 
will make men partial to themfelves and their 
friends : and on the other fide, that ill na- 
ture, paflion and revenge will carry them too 
far in punifhing others ; and hence nothing 
but confufion and diforder will follow, and 
that therefore God hath certainly appointed 
government to reftrain the partiality and 
violence of men. I eafily grant, that civil 
government is the proper remedy for the in- 
conveniencies of the (late of nature, which 
mull: certainly be great, where men may be 
judges in their own cafe, fince it is eafy to 
be imagined, that he who was fo unjuft as 
to do his brother an injury, will fcarce be fo 
juft as to condemn himfelf for it : but I (hall 
defire thofe who make this objection, to re- 
member, that abfolute monarch s are but men ; 
and if government is to be the remedy of 
thofe evils, which necefTarily follow from 
men's being judges in their own cafes, and 
the ftate of nature is therefore not to be 
endured, I defire to know what kind of 
government that is, and how much better 
it is than the ftate of nature, where one man, 
commanding a multitude, has the liberty to 
be judge in his own cafe, and may do to all 
his fubjects whatever he pleafes, without the 
leaft liberty to any one to queftion or controul 
thofe who execute his pleafure ? and in what- 
foever he doth, whether led by reafon, miftake 
or paffion, mud be fubmitted to? much better 


OF Clt'l L-G OVERNMEN T. 20£ 

it is in the ftate of nature, wherein men are not 
bound to fubmit to the unjuft will of ano- 
ther : and if he that judges, judges amifs in 
his own, or any other cafe, he is anfwerable 
for it to the reft of mankind. 

§. 14. It is often afked as a mighty ob- 
jection, where are, or ever were there any 
men in fuch a Jiate of nature f To which it 
may fuffice as an anfwer at prefent, that 
fince all princes and rulers of independent — 
governments all through the world, are in a 
ftate of nature, it is plain the world never 
was, nor ever will be, without numbers of 
men in that ftate. I have named all go- 
vernors of independent communities, whether 
they are, or are not, in league with others : 
for it is not every compact that puts an end 
to the ftate of nature between men, but only 
this one of agreeing together mutually to 
enter into one community, and make one 
body politic ; other promifes, and compacts, 
men may make one with another, and yet 
ftili be in the ftate of nature. The promifes 
.and bargains for truck, &c. between the two 
men in the defert ifland, mentioned by Gar- 
cilajfo de la Vega, in his hiftory of Peru ; or 
between a Swifs and an Indian, in the woods, 
of America, are binding to them, though 
they are perfectly in a ftate of nature, in 
reference to one another : for truth and 
keeping of faith belongs to men, as men, 
and not as members of fociety. 

§• *5- 

206 Of Civil-Government. 

§. 15. To thofe that fay, there were never 
any men in the flate of nature, I will not 
only oppofe the authority of the judicious 
Hooker, Keel. Pol. lib. \. feci. 10. where he 
fays, 'The laws which have been hitherto men-' 
tioned, i. e. the laws of nature, do bind rrien 
abfolutely, even as they are 7nen, although they 
have never any fettled fellow/hip, never any 
folemn agreement amongjl them/elves what to do, 
or not to do: but forafmuch as we are not 
by ourfelves fufficie?it to furnijh ourfelves with 
competent ftore of things, needful for fuch a 
life as our nature doth defire, a life fit for the 
dignity of man ; therefore to fupply thofe defects 
and imperfections which are in us, as living 
fingle and folely by ourfelves, we are fiaturally 
induced to feek communio?i and fellowfhip with 
others : this was the caufe of?nens uniting them- 
f elves at firfl in politic focieties. But I more- 
over affirm, that all men are naturally in 
that flate, and remain fo, till by their own 
confents they make themfelves members of 
fome politic fociety -, and I doubt not in the 
fequel of this difcourfe, to make it very clear. 


Of the State of War, 

§. 16. f"'g "^ H E flate of war is a ftate of 

enmity and deflruBion : and 

therefore declaring by word or adion, not 

Of Civil-Government, 207 

a paffionate and hafty, but a fedate fettled 
defign upon another man's life, puts him in 
a fiate of war with him againft whom he 
has declared fuch an intention, and fo has 
expofed his life to the other's power to be 
taken away by him, or any one that joins 
with him in his defence, and efpoufes his 
quarrel; it being reafonable and juft, I mould 
have a right to deflroy that which threatens 
me with deftru&ion : for, by the fundamental 
law of nature t man being to be prrferi).ed as 
much as poffible, when all cannot be pre- 
ferred, the fafety of the innocent is to be 
preferred : and one may deflroy a man who 
makes war upon him, or has difcovered an 
enmity to his being, for the fame reafon that 
he may kill a wolf or a lion ; becaufe fuch 
men are not under the ties of the common- 
law of reafon, have no other rule, but that 
of force and violence, and fo may be treated 
as beafts of prey, thofe dangerous and noxious 
creatures, that will be fure to deflroy him 
whenever he falls into their power. 

§.17. And hence it is, that he who at- 
tempts to get another man into his abfolute 
power, does thereby put himfelf into a fiate 
of war with him ; it being to be underftood 
as a declaration of a defign upon his life : 
for I have reafon to conclude, that he who 
would get me into his power without my 
confent, would ufe me as he pleafed when 
he had got me there, and deflroy me too ' 


2o8 Of Civil-Government. 
when he had a fancy to it ; for no body can 
defire to have me in his abfolute power, unlefs 
it be to compel me by force to that which 
is againft the right of my freedom, i. e. 
make me a flave. To be free from fuch 
force is the only fecurky of my prefervation > 
and reafon bids me look on him, as an enemy 
to my prefervation, who would take away 
that freedom which is the fence to it ; fo 
that he who makes an attempt to enjlave me, 
thereby puts himfelf into a ftate of war with 
me. He that, in the ftate of nature, would 
take away the freedom that belongs to any 
one in that ftate, muft neceffarily be fuppofed 
to have a defign to take away every thing 
elfe, that freedom being the foundation of all 
the reft ; as he that, in the ftate of fociety, 
would take away the freedom belonging to 
thofe of that fociety or common-wealth, muft 
he fuppofed to defign to take away from 
them every thing elfe, and fo be looked on 
as in a ftate of war* 

§. 1 8. This makes it lawful for a man to 
kill a thief who has not in the leaft hurt 
him, nor declared any defign upon his life, 
any farther than, by the ufe of force, fo to 
get him in his power, as to take away his 
money, or what he pleafes, from him $ be- 
caufe ufing force, where he has no right, to 
get me into his power, let his pretence be 
what it will, I have no reafon to fuppofe, 
that he, who would take away my liberty > would 



Of Ci vil-Gove rn Me nt. 209 

not, when he had me in his power, take 
away every thing elfe. And therefore it is 
lawful for me to treat him as one who has 
put himfelf into a Jiate of war with me, /. e. 
kill him if I can ; for to. that hazard does 
he juftly expofe himfelf, whoever introduces 
a ftate of war, and is aggreffor in it. 

§. 19. And here we have the plain dif- 
ference between the Jiate of nature a?id the 
fiate of war, which however fome men have 
confounded, are as far diftant, as a {late of 
peace, good will, mutual affiftance and pre- 
fervation, and a flate of enmity, malice, 
violence and mutual deftruction, are one from 
another. Men living together according to 
reafon, without a common fuperior on earth, 
with authority to judge between them, is 
properly the fiate of nature. But force, or a 
declared deiign of force, upon the perfon of 
another, where there is no common fuperior 
on earth to appeal to for relief, is the Jiate of 
war : and it is the want of fuch an appeal 
gives a man the right of war even againft an 
aggrefjor, tho' he be in fociety and a fellow 
fubjedt. Thus a thief, whom I cannot harm, 
but by appeal to the law, for having ftolen 
all that I am worth, I may kill, when he fets 
on me to rob me but of my horfe or coat ; 
becaufe the law, which was made for my 
prefervation, where it cannot interpofe to fe- 
cure my life from prefent force, which, if 
loft, is capable of no reparation, permits me 
P my 

210 Of Civil-Government. 

my own defence, and the right of war, a 
liberty to kill the aggreffor, becaufe the ag- 
grefTor allows not time to appeal to our com- 
mon judge, nor the decifion of the law, for 
remedy in a cafe where the mifchief may 
be irreparable. Want of a common judge 
with authority, puts all men in a ftate of 
nature : force without right, upon a man's 
perfon, makes a flate of war, both where 
there is, and is not, a common judge. 

§. 20. But when the actual force is over, 
the Jlate of war ceafes between thofe that 
are in fociety, and are equally on both fides 
fubjected to the fair determination of the 
law ' 3 becaufe then there lies open the remedy 
of appeal for the paft injury, and to prevent 
future harm : but where no fuch appeal is, 
as in the flate of nature, for want of pofitive 
laws, and judges with authority to appeal to, 
the flate of war once begun, continues, with 
a right to the innocent party to deftroy the 
other whenever he can, until the aggreffor 
offers peace, and defires reconciliation on fuch 
terms as may repair any wrongs he has al- 
ready done, and Secure the innocent for the 
future ; nay, where an appeal to the law, and 
conftituted judges, lies open, but the remedy 
is denied by a manifelt, perverting of juflice, 
and a barefaced wrefdng of the laws to pro- 
tect or indemnify the violence or injuries of 
fome men, or party df men, there it is hard 
to imagine any thing but a jlate of war: 


Of Civil-Government. 211 
for where-ever violence is ufed, and injury 
done, though by hands appointed to admi- 
nifter juftice, it is Hill violence and injury, 
however coloured with the name, pretences, 
or forms of law, the end whereof being to 
protect and redrefs the innocent, by an un- 
biased application of it, to all who are under 
it ; where-ever that is not bona fide done, 
war is made upon the fufferers, who ftaving 
no appeal on earth to right them, they are 
left to the only remedy in fuch cafes, an 
appeal to heaven. 

§.21. To avoid this Jlate of war (wherein 
there is no appeal but to heaven, and wherein 
every the leaft difference is apt to end, where 
there is no authority to decide between the 
contenders) is one great reafon of men's putting 
themfelves into fociety, and quitting the date 
of nature : for where there is an authority, 
a power on earth, from which relief can be 
had by appeal, there the continuance of the 
jlate of war is excluded, and the controverfy 
is decided by that power. Had there been 
any fuch court, any fuperior jurifdiclion on 
earth, to determine the right between Jephtha 
and the Ammojiites, they had never come to 
a Jlate of war : but we fee he was forced to 
appeal to heaven. The Lord- the Judge (fays 
he) be judge this day between the children of 
Ifrael and the children of Amnion, J^g- **• 
27. and then profecuting, and relying on his 
appeal, he leads out his army to battle : and 
P 2 therefore 

212 Of Civil-Government. 

therefore in fuch controverfies, where the 
queftion is put, who Jhall be judge ? It cannot 
be meant, who (hall decide the controverfy; 
every one knows what fephtha here tells us, 
that the Lord the "Judge mall judge. Where 
there is no judge on earth, the appeal lies 
to God in heaven. That quefHon then can- 
not mean, who mall judge, whether another 
hath put himfelf in a jlate of war with me, 
and whether I may, as fephtha did, appeal to 
heaven in it ? of that I myfelf can only be 
judge in my own'confcience, as I will an- 
swer it, at the great day, to the fupreme judge 
of all men. 


§.22. ' | ^ HE natural liberty of man is to 
L be free from any fuperior power 
on earth, and not to be under the will or 
legiflative authority of man, but to have only 
the law of nature for his rule. The liberty 
of man, in fociety, is to be under no other 
legiflative power, but that eftablimed, by 
confent, in the common-wealth ; nor under 
the dominion of any will, or reftraint of any 
law, but what that legiflative mail enact, 
according to the trufl: put in it. Freedom 
then is not what Sir Robert Filmer tells us, 
Obfervations, A. $$. a liberty for every one 
4 t$ 

Of Civil-Government. 213 

t@ do what be lifts, to live as be pleafes, and 
not to be tied by any laws : but freedom of men 
under government is, to have a ftanding rule 
to live by, common to every one of that 
fociety, and made by the legiflative power 
erected in it ; a liberty to follow my own will 
in all things, where the rule prefcribes not ; 
and not to be fubjecl to the inconftant, un- 
certain, unknown, arbitrary will of another 
man : as freedom of nature is, to be under no 
other restraint but the law of nature. 

§. 23. This freedom from abfolute, arbi- 
trary power, is fo neceffary to, and clofely 
joined with a man's prefervation, that he 
cannot part with it, but by what forfeits his 
prefervation and life together : for a man, 
not having the power of his own life, cannot, 
by compact, or his own confent, en/lave bim- 
felf to any one, nor put himfelf under the 
abfolute, arbitrary power of another, to take 
away his life, when he pleafes. No body can 
give more power than he has himfelf -, and 
he that cannot take away his own life, cannot 
give another power over it. Indeed, having 
by his fault forfeited his own life, by fome 
acl: that deferves death j he, to whom he 
has forfeited it, may (when he has him in 
his power) delay to take it, and make ufe 
of him to his own fervice, and he does him 
no injury by it : for, whenever he finds the 
hardmip of his flavery outweigh the value of 
his life, it is in his power, by refilling the, 

P 3 will 

214 O F C I V I L -G O V E R N M E N T . 

will of his mafter, to draw on himfelf the 
death he defires. 

§. 24. This is the perfect condition of 
ftanjery, which is nothing elfe, but the ft ate 
of war continued, between a lawful conqueror 
and a captive : for, if once compact enter 
between them, and make an agreement for a 
limited power on the one fide, and obedience 
on the other, the ft ate of war and ftavery 
ceafes, as long as the compact endures : for, 
as has been faid, no man can, by agreement, 
pafs over to another that which he hath not 
in himfelf, a power over his own life. 

I confefs, we find among the Jews, as- 
well as other nations, that men did fell 
themfelves 3 but, it is plain, this was only 
to drudgery, not to ftavery : for, it is evident, 
the perfon fold was not under an abfolute, 
arbitrary, defpotical power : for the mafter 
could not have power to kill him, at any 
time, whom, at a certain time, he was ob- 
liged to let go free out of his fervicej and 
the mafter of fuch a fervant was-fo far from 
having an arbitrary power over his life, that 
he could not, ^t pleafure, fo much as maim 
him, but the lofs of an eye, or tooth, fet 
him free, Exod. xxi. 



Of Civil-Government. 215 


§. 25. \ T THether we confider natural rea- 
VV fon, which tells us, that men, 
being once born, have a right to their pre- 
fervation, and confequently to meat and 
drink, and fuch other things as nature af- 
fords for their fubflftence : or revelation* 
which gives us an account of thofe grants 
God made of the world to Adam, and to 
Noah, and his fons, it is very clear, that 
God, as king David fays, Pfal. cxv. 16. has 
given the earth to the children of men ; given 
it to mankind in common. But this being 
fuppofed, it feems to fome a very great dif- 
ficulty, how any one fhould ever come to 
have a property in any thing : I will not con- 
tent myfelf to anfwer, that if it be difficult 
to make out property, upon a fuppofition that 
God gave the world to Adam y and his po- 
jfterity in common, it is impoffible that any 
man, but one univerfal monarch, fhould have 
any property upon a fuppofition, that God 
gave the world to Ada?n, and his heirs in 
fucceffion, excluiive of all the reft of his po- 
fterity. But I (hall endeavour to (hew, how 
men might come to have a property in feveral 
parts of that which God gave to mankind in 
common, and that without any exprefs com- 
pact of all the commoners. 

P 4 §.26.. 

2"i6 Of Civil-Government. 

§. 26. God, who hath given the world to 
men in common, hath alfo given them reafon 
to make ufe of it to the beft advantage of 
life, and convenience. The earth, and all 
that is therein, is given to men for the fup- 
port and comfort of their being. And tho' ^ 
all the fruits it naturally produces, and fyeafts %/J 
^QL~ it feeds, belong to mankind in common, as 
) * they are produced by the fpontaneous hand 
of nature ; and no body has originally a 
private dominion, exclufive of the reft of 
mankind, in any of them, as they are thus 
in their natural ftate : yet being given for 
the ufe of men, there muft of necemty be a 
means to appropriate them fome way or other, 
before they can be of any ufe, or at all be- 
neficial to any particular man. The fruit, 
or venifon, which nourimes the wild Indian, 
who knows no inclofure, and is ftill a tenant 
in common, muft be his, and fo his, i. e. a 
part of him, that another can no longer 
have anv ri^ht to it, before it can do him 
any good for the fupport of his life. 

§. 27. Though the earth, and all inferior 
creatures, be common to all men, yet every 
man has a property in his own perfon : this 
no body has any right to but himfelf. The 
labour of his body, and the work of his hands, 
we may fay, are properly his. Whatfoever 
then he removes out cf the ftate that nature 
hath provided, and left it in, he hath mixed 
his labour with, and joined to it fomething 


Of Civil-Government. 217 

that is his own, and thereby makes it his 
property. It being by him removed from 
the common ftate nature hath placed it in, 
it hath by this labour fomething annexed to 
it, that excludes the common right of other 
I men : for this labour being the unqueftionable 
property of the labourer, no man but he can 
have a right to what that is once joined to, 
at leaft where there is enough, and as good, 
left in common for others. 

§. 28. He that is nourifhed by the acorns 
he picked up under an oak, or the apples he 
gathered from the trees in the wood, has 
certainly appropriated them to himfelf. No 
body can deny but the nourifhrnent is his. 
I afk then, when did they begin to be his ? 
when he digefled ? or when he eat ? or when 
he boiled ? or when he brought them home ? 
or when he picked their, up ? and it is plain, 
if the firft gathering made them not his, 
nothing elfe could. That labour put a di- 
ftinction between them and common : that 
added fomething to them more than nature, 
the common mother of all, had done ; and 
fo they became his private right. And will 
any one fay, he had no right to thofe acorns 
or apples, he thus appropriated, becaufe he 
had not the confent of all maikind to make 
them his ? Was it a robbery tius to aflume 
to himfelf what belonged to all in common ? 
If fuch a confent as that was neceffary, man 
had flarved, notwithstanding the plenty God 


2i8 Of Civil-Government. 

had given him. We fee in commons, which 
remain fo by compact, that it is the taking 
any part of what is common, and removing 
it out of the flate nature leaves it in, which 
begins the property j without which the com- 
mon is of no ufe. And the taking of this 
or that part, does not depend on the exprefs 
confent of all the commoners. Thus the 
grafs my horfe has bit ; the turfs my fervant 
has cut ; and the ore I have digged in any 
place, where I have a right to them in 
common with others, become my property , 
without the aflignation or confent of any 
body. The labour that was mine, removing 
them out of that common flate they were 
in, hath fixed my property in them. 

§. 29. By making in explicit confent of 
every commoner, neceffary to any one's ap- 
propriating to himfelf any part of what is 
given in common, children or fervants could 
not cut the meat, which their father or 
matter had provided for them in common, 
without affigning to every one his peculiar 
part. Though the water running in the 
fountain be every one's, yet who can doubt, 
but that in tbe pitcher is his only who 
drew it out ? His labour hath taken it out 
of the hands cf nature, where it was com- 
mon, and belonged equally to all her chil- 
dren, and hath thereby appropriated it to 


Of Civil-Government. 219 

§. 30. Thus this law of reafon makes the 
deer that Indians who hath killed it ; it is 
allowed to be his goods, who hath beft'owed 
his labour upon it, though before it was the 
common right of every one. And amongfl 
thofe who are counted the civilized part of 
mankind, who have made and multiplied 
pofitive laws to determine property, this ori- 
ginal law of nature, for the beginning of pro- 
perty, in what was before common, itill takes 
place j and by virtue thereof, what flm any 
one catches in the ocean, that great and frill 
remaining common of mankind ; or what 
ambergrife any one takes up here, is by the 
labour that removes it out of that common 
itate nature left it in, made his property, who 
takes that pains about it. And even amongir, 
us, the hare that any one is hunting, is 
thought his who purfues her during the chafe : 
for being a bead that is ftill looked upon as 
common, and no man's private pofleilion ; 
whoever has employed fo much labour about 
any of that kind, as to find and purfue her, 
has thereby removed her from the ftate of 
nature, wherein me was common, and hath 
begun a property. 

§.31. It will perhaps be objected to this, 
that if gathering the acorns, or other fruits 
of the earth, &c, makes a right to them, 
then any one may ingrofs as much as he will- 
To which I anfwer, Not fo. The fame law 
of nature, that does by this means give us 


220 Of Civil-Government. 

property, does alio bound that property too. 
God has given us all things richly, r Tim. vi. 
12. is the voice of reafon confirmed by in- 
fpiration. But how far has he given it us ? 
*to enjoy. As much as any one can make ufe 
of to any advantage of life before it fpoils, 
fo much he may by his labour fix a property 
in : whatever is beyond this, is more than 
his mare, and belongs to others. Nothing 
was made by God for man to fpoil or de- 
stroy. And thus, confidering the plenty of 
natural provisions there was a long time in 
the world, and the few fpenders ; and to how 
frnall a part of that provision the induitry of 
one man could extend itfelf, and ingrofs it 
to the prejudice of others j efpecially keeping 
within the bounds, fet by reafon, of what 
might ferve for his ufe; there could be then 
little room for quarrels or contentions about 
property fo efcablifhed. 

§. 32. But the chief matter of property be- 
ing now not the fruits of the earth, and the 
beafl:s that fubfift on it, but the earth itfelf -, 
as that which takes in and carries with it all 
the reft -, I think it is plain, that property in 
that too is acquired as the former. As much 
land as a man tills, plants, improves, culti- 
vates, and can ufe the product of, fo much 
is his property. He by his labour does, as it 
were, inclofe it from the common. Nor will 
it invalidate his right, to fay every body elfe 
has aQ eaual title to it ; and therefore he 


Of Civil-Government. 221 
cannot appropriate, he cannot inclofe, with- 
out the confent of all his fellow -commoners, 
all mankind. God, when he gave the world 
in common to all mankind, commanded man 
alfo to labour, and the penury of his con- 
dition required it of him. God and his rea- 
fon commanded him to fubdue the earth, 
i. e. improve it for the benefit of life, and 
therein lay out fomething upon it that was 
his own, his labour. He that in obedience 
to this command of God, fubdued, tilled 
and fowed any part of it, thereby annexed to 
it fomething that was his property \ which 
another had no title to, nor could without 
injury take from him. 

§.33. Nor was this appropriation of any 
parcel of land, by improving it, any pre- 
judice to any other man, fince there was 
ftill enough, and as good left ; and more 
than the yet unprovided could ufe. So that, in 
effect, there was never the lefs left for others 
becaufe of his inciofure ffer himfelf : for he 
that leaves as much as another can make 
ufe of, does as good as take nothing at all. 
No body could think himfelf injured by the 
drinking of another man, though he took a 
good draught, who had a whole river of 
the fame water left him to quench his 
thirfl : and the cafe of land and water, 
where there is enough of both, is perfectly 
the fame. 

§• 34- 

222 Of Civil-Government. 

§. 34. God gave the world to men in 
common ; but fince he gave it them for their 
benefit, and the greater! conveniencies of 
life they were capable to draw from it, it 
cannot be fuppcfed he meant it fhould al- 
ways remain common and uncultivated. He 
gave it to the ufe of the induftrious and ra- 
tional, (and labour was to be his title to it;) 
not to the fancy or covetoufnefs of the quar- 
relfome and contentious. He that had as 
good left for his improvement, as was already 
taken up, needed not complain, ought not 
to meddle with what was already improved 
by another's labour : if he did, it is plain 
he defired the benefit of another's pains, 
which he had no right to, and not the ground 
which God had given him in common with 
others to labour on, and whereof there was 
as good left, as that already pofTeiTed, and 
more than he knew what to do with, or his 
induflry could reach to. 

§. 25- K is true, in land that is common in 
"England^ or any other country, where there 
is plenty of people under government, who 
have money and commerce, no one can in- 
clofe or appropriate any part, without t 
confent of all his fellow-commoners ; becaufe 
this is left common by compact, *'. e. by the 
law of the land, which is not to be violated. 
And though it be common, in refpecl of 
feme men, it is not fo to all mankind; but 
is the joint property of this country, or this 

pariih - 

Of Civil-Government. 223 

parifb. Befides, the remainder, after fuch 
inclofure, would not be as good to the reft 
of the commoners, as the whole was when 
they could all make ufe of the whole; v/hereas 
in the beginning and firft peopling of the 
great common of the world, it was quite 
otherwife. The law man was under, was 
rather for appropriating. God commanded, 
and his wants forced him to labour. That 
was his property which could not be taken 
from him where-ever he had fixed it. And 
hence fubduing or cultivating the earth, and 
having dominion, we fee are joined together. 
The one gave title to the other. So that 
God, by commanding to fubdue, gave au- 
thority fo far to appropriate : and the con- 
dition of human life, which requires labour 
and materials to work on, neceffarily intro- 
duces private pofTeflions. 

§. 36. The meajure of property nature has 
well let by the extent of men's labour and the 
conveniencies of life : no man's labour could 
fubdue, or appropriate all ; nor could his 
enjoyment confume more than a fmall part; 
fo that it was impoflible for any man, this 
way, to intrench upon the right of another, 
or acquire to himfelf a property, to the pre- 
judice of his neighbour, who would frill have 
room for as good, and as large a porTeffion 
(after the other had taken out his) as before 
it was appropriated. This meafure did confine 
every man's pojfeffion to a very moderate pro- > 
5 portion, 

224 Of Civil-Government. 

portion, and fuch as he might appropriate 
to himfelf, without injury to any body, in 
the firft ages of the world, when men were 
more in danger to be loft, by wandering from 
their company, in the then vaft wildernefs 
of the earth, than to be ftraitened for want 
of room to plant in. And the fame meafure 
may be allowed ftill without prejudice to any 
body, as full as the world ieems : for fup- 
pofing a man, or family, in the ftate they 
were at firft peopling of the world by the 
children of Adam, or Noah -, let him plant in 
fome in-land, vacant places of America, we 
fhall find that the pojfejjtons he could make 
himfelf, upon the meajures we have given, 
would not be very large, nor, even to this 
day, prejudice the reft of mankind, or give 
them reaibn to complain, or think them- 
felves injured by this man's incroachment, 
though the race of men have now fpread 
themfelves to all the corners of the world, 
and do infinitely exceed the fmall number 
was at the beginning. Nay, the extent of 
ground is of io little value, without labour, 
that I have heard it affirmed, that in Spain 
itfelf a man may be permitted to plough, 
ibw and reap, without being difturbed, upon 
land he has no other title to, but only his 
making ufe of it. But, on the contrary, the 
inhabitants think themfelves beholden to 
him, who, by his induftry on neglecled, and 
confequently wafte land, has increafed the 



flock of corn, which they wanted. Bat be 
this as it will, which I lay no ftrefs on ; this 
I dare boldly affirm, that the fame rule of 
propriety, {viz.) that every man mould have 
as much as he could make-ufe of, would hold 
frill in the world, without flraitening any 
body; fince there is land enough in the 
world to fuffice double the inhabitants, had 
not the invention of money, and the tacit agree- 
ment of men to put a value on it, introduced 
(by confent) larger polTemons, and a right to 
them ; which, how it has done, I (hail by 
and by fhew more at large. 

§. 37. This is certain, that in the begin- 
ning, before the defire of having more than 
man needed had altered the intrinfic value 
of things, which depends only on their ufe- 
fulnefs to the life of man ; or had agreed, 
that a little piece of yellow metal, which would 
keep without wafting or decay, mould be 
worth a great piece of flefh, or a whole heap 
of corn ; though men had a right to appro- 
priate, by their labour, each one to himfelf, 
as much of the things of nature, as he could 
ufe : yet this could not be much, nor to the 
prejudice of others, where the fame plenty 
was flill left to thofe who would ufe the 
fame induftry. To which let me add, that 
he who appropriates land to himfelf by his 
labour, does not lelTen, but increafe the com- 
mon frock of mankind : for the provifions 
ferving to the fupport of human life, pro- 
Q^ duced 

226 Of Civil-Government. 

duced by one acre of inclofed and culti- 
vated land, are (to fpeak much within com- 
pafs) ten times more than thofe which are 
yielded by an acre of land of an equal rich- 
nefs lying wafte in common. And therefore 
he that inclofes land, and has a greater plenty 
of the conveniencies of life from ten acres, 
than he could have from an hundred left to 
nature, may truly be faid to give ninety 
acres to mankind : for his labour now fup- 
plies him with provifions out of ten acres, 
which were but the product of an hundred 
lying in common. I have here rated the 
improved land very low, in making its pro- 
duct but as ten to one, when it is much 
nearer an hundred to one : for I afk, whether 
in the wild woods and uncultivated wafte of 
America, left to nature, without any improve- 
ment, tillage or hufbandry, a thoufand acres 
yield the needy and wretched inhabitants as 
many conveniencies of life, as ten acres of 
equally fertile land do in Devcnfljire, where 
they are well cultivated ? 

Before the appropriation of land, he who 
gathered as much of the wild fruit, killed, 
caught, or tamed, as many of the beafts, as 
he could -, he that fo imployed his pains 
about any of the fpontaneous products of 
nature, as any way to alter them from the 
ftate which nature put them in, by placing 
any of his labour on them, did thereby ac- 
quire a propriety in them : but if they perifhed, 


Of CiviL'OovEKivMtNT, 227 

in his poffeiiion, without their due ufe ; if 
the fruits rotted, or the venifon putriiied, 
before he could fpend it, he offended againfl 
the common law of n;.:ure, and was liable 
to be punimed ; he invaded his neighbour's 
fhare, for he had no right, farther than his 
z/fe called for any of them, and they might 
ferve to afford him conveniencies of life. 

§.38. The fame meafures governed the 
pofjefjion of land too : whatfeever he tilled and 
reaped, laid up and made ufe of, before it 
fpoiled, that was his peculiar right ; what- 
foever he enclofed, and could feed, and make 
ufe of, the cattle and product was alfo his. 
But if either the grafs of his inclofure rotted 
on the ground, or the fruit of his planting 
perifhed without gathering, and laying up, 
this part of the earth, notwithftanding his 
inclofure, was ftill to be looked on as wafte, 
and might be the poffeffion of any other. 
Thus, at the beginning, Cain might take 
as much ground as he could till, and make 
it his own land, and yet leave enough to 
Abel's fheep to feed on ; a few acres would 
ferve for both their poffefTions. But as fa- 
milies increafed, and induftry inlarged their 
flocks, their pojfej/ions inlarged with the need 
of them -, but yet it was commonly without 
any fixed property in the ground they made 
ufe of, till they incorporated, fettled them- 
felves together, and built cities ,• and then, 
by confent, they came in time, to fet out ' 
Qj2 the 

228 Of Civil-Government. 

the bounds of their dijiincl territories, and agree 
on limits between them and their neigh- 
bours j and by laws within themfelves, fet- 
tled the properties of thofe of the fame fo- 
ciety : for we fee, that in that part of the 
world which was firft inhabited, and there- 
fore like to be beft peopled, even as low 
down as Abraham's time, they wandered with 
their flocks, and their herds, which was their 
fubftance, freely up and down ; and this 
Abraham did, in a country where he was a 
Granger. "Whence it is plain, that at leaft 
a great part of the land lay in common ; that 
the inhabitants valued it not, nor claimed 
property in any more than they made ufe of. 
But when there was not room enough in the 
fame place, for their herds to feed together, 
they by confent, as Abraham and Lot did, 
Gen. xiii. 5. feparated and inlarged their 
pafture, where it bell liked them. And for 
the fame reafon Efau went from his father, 
and his brother, and planted in mount Seir, 
Gen. xxxvi. 6. 

§. 39. And thus, without fuppofing any 
private dominion, and property in Adam, over 
all the world, exclufive of all other men, 
which can no v/ay be proved, nor any one's 
property be made out from it ; but fuppofing 
the 'world given, as it was, to the children of 
men in common, we fee how labour could make 
men diftinct titles to feveral parcels of it, for 


Of Civil-Government. 229 

their private ufes ; wherein there could be no 
doubt of right, no room for quarrel. 

§. 40. Nor is it fo ftrange, as perhaps 
before confideration it may appear, that the 
property of labour mould be able to over- 
balance the community of land : for it is 
labour indeed that puts the difference of value 
on every thing ; and let any one conlider what 
the difference is between an acre of land 
planted with tobacco or fugar, fown with 
wheat or barley, and an acre of the fame 
land lying in common, without any huf- 
bandry upon it, and he will find, that the 
improvement of labour makes the far greater 
part of the value. I think it will be but a 
very modeft computation to fay, that of the 
produces of the earth ufeful to the life of 
man nine tenths are the effects of labour : nay, 
if we will rightly eftimate things as they come 
to our ufe, and caft up the feveral expences 
about them, what in them is purely owing 
to nature, and what to labour, we (hall find, 
that in moil of them ninety-nine hundredths 
are wholly to be put on the account of 

§. 41. There cannot be a clearer demon- 
ftration of any thing, than feveral nations of the 
Americans are of this, who are rich in land, and 
poor in all the comforts of life ; whom nature 
having furnifhed as liberally as any other people, 
with the materials of plenty, z. e. a fruitful 
foil, apt to produce in abundance, what might , 

0^,3 ' ferv e 

230 Of Civil-Government. 
ferve for food, raiment, and delight; yet for 
want of improving it by labour, have not one 
hundredth part of the conveniencies we en- 
joy : and a king of a large and fruitful ter- 
ritory there, feeds, lodges, and is clad worfe 
than a day-labourer in England. 

§. 42. To make this a little clearer, let us 
but trace fome of the ordinary provilions of 
life, through their feveral progrerTes, before 
they come to our ufe, and fee how much 
they receive of their value from human indujiry,. 
Bread, wine and cloth, are things of daily 
ufe, and great plenty -, yet notwithftanding, 
acorns, water and leaves, or fkins, muit be 
our bread, drink and cioathing, did not la- 
bour furnifh us with thefe more ufeful com- 
modities : for whatever bread is more worth 
than acorns, wine than water, and cloth or 
flk, than leaves, fkins or mofs, that is wholly 
owing to, labour and indujiry -, the one of 
thefe being the food and raiment which 
unafiifted nature furnifhes us with -, the other, 
provilions which our induftry and pains pre- 
pare for us, which how much they exceed 
the other in value, when any one hath com* 
p«ted, he will then fee how much labour 
makes the far greatejl part of the value of 
things we enjoy in this world : and the 
ground which produces the materials, is 
fcarce to be reckoned in, as any, or at moft, 
but a very fmall part of it ; fo little, that 
even amongft us, land that is left wholly to 


Of Civil-Government. 231 

nature, that hath no improvement of paftu- 
rage, tillage, or planting, is called, as indeed 
it is, wajie ; and we (hall find the benefit of 
it amount to little more than nothing. 

This mews how much numbers of men 
are to be preferred to largehefs of dominions; 
and that the increafe of lands, and the right 
employing of them, is the great art of govern- 
ment : and that prince, who (hail be fo wife 
and godlike, as by eftabliihed laws of liberty 
to fecure protection and encouragement to 
the honeft induftry of mankind, againft the 
oppreflion of power and narrownefs of party, 
will quickly be too hard for his neighbours : 
but this by the by. To return to the argu- 
ment in hand, 

§. 43. An acre of land, that bears here 
twenty bumels of wheat, and another in 
America, which, with the fame husbandry, 
would do the like, are, without doubt, of 
the fame natural intrinfic value : but yet the 
benefit mankind receives from the one in a 
year, is worth 5 /. and from the other 
pofiibly not worth a penny, if all the profit 
an Indian received from it were to be valued, 
and fold here ; at lead, I may truly fay, not 
one thoufandth. It is labour then which puts 
the great efi part of value upon land, without 
which it would fcarcely be worth any thing : 
it is to that we owe the greatefl part of ail 
its uieful products • for all that the draw, 
bran, bread, of that acre of wheat, is more 

Q^j. worth 

232 Of Civil-Government. 

worth than the product of an acre of as good 
land, which lies wafte, is all the effect of 
labour : for it is not barely the plough-man's 
pains, the reaper's and threfher's toil, and 
the baker's fweat, is to be counted into the 
bread we eat ; the labour of thofe who broke 
the oxen, who digged and wrought the iron 
and ftones, who felled and framed the timber 
employed about the plough, mill, oven, or 
any other utenfils, which are a van: number, 
requifite to this corn, from its being feed to 
be fown to its being made bread, mult all be 
charged on the account of labour, and re- 
ceived as an effect of that : nature and the 
earth furnifhed only the almoft worthlefs 
materials, as in themfelves. It would be a 
flrange catalogue of things ', that induftry pro- 
'vided and made nfe of, about every loaf of bread, 
before it came to our ufe, if we could trace 
them ; iron, wood, leather, bark, timber, 
ilone, bricks, coals, lime, cloth, dying drugs, 
pitch, tar, malls, ropes, and all the materials 
made ufe of in the fhip, that brought any of 
the commodities made ufe of by any of the 
workmen, to any part of the work ; all which 
it would be almoft impofiible, at leaft too 
long, to reckon up. 

§. 44. From all which it is evident, that 
though the things of nature are given in 
common, yet man, by being mailer of him- 
felf, and proprietor of his own perfon, and the 
&c~lions or labour of it, had fill tn himfelf the 


Of Civil-Government. 233 

great foundation of property ; and that, which 
made up the great part of what he applied 
to the fupport or comfort of his being, when 
invention and arts had improved the conve- 
niences of life, was perfectly his own, and 
did not belong in common to others. 

§. 45. Thus labour t in the beginning, gave 
a right of property, wherever any one was 
pleafed to employ it upon what was com- 
mon, which remained a long while the far 
greater part, and is yet more than mankind 
makes ufe of. Men, at firft, for the mod 
part, contented themfelves with what un- 
affifted nature offered to their neceilities : 
and though afterwards, in fome parts of the 
world, (where the increafe of people and 
flock, with the ufe of mo?iey, had made land 
fcarce, and fo of fome value) the feveral 
communities fettled the bounds of their diftinct 
territories, and by laws within themfelves 
regulated the properties of the private men 
of their fociety, and fo, by co?npat~l and 
agreement, fettled the property which labour 
and induftry began ; and the leagues that 
have been made between feveral ftates and 
kingdoms, either exprefly or tacitly difowning 
all claim and right to the land in the others 
porTeffion, have, by common confent, given up 
their pretences to their natural common right, 
which originally they had to thofe countries, 
and fo have, by po/itive agreement, fettled a 
property amongft themfelves, in diftinct; parts 
and parcels of the earth ; yet there are rtill ' 

great ' 

234 O f Civil-Government. 
great tracts of ground to be found, which 
(the inhabitants thereof not having joined 
with the red of mankind, in the confent of 
the ufe of their common money) lie wafte, 
and are more than the people who dwell 
on it do, or can make ufe of, and fo ftill 
lie in common j tho' this can fcarce happen 
amongft that part of mankind that have 
confented to the ufe of money. 

§. 46. The greatell: part of things really 
iifeful to the life of man, and fuch as the 
neceffity of fubfifting made the firfl com- 
moners of the world look after, as it doth 
the Americans now, are generally things of 
jhort duration ; fuch as, if they are not con- 
fumed by ufe, will decay and perifh of them- 
felves : gold, filver and diamonds, are things 
that fancy or agreement hath put the value 
on, more than real ufe, and the necelfary 
fupport of life. Now of thofe good things 
which nature hath provided in common, 
every one had a right (as hath been faid) to as 
much as he could ufe, and property in all that 
he could erTecl: with his labour ; all that his 
indujlry could extend to, to alter from the 
ftate nature had put it in, was his. He that 
gathered a hundred bufhels of acorns or ap- 
ples, had thereby a property in them, they 
were his goods as foon as gathered. He was 
only to look, that he ufed them before they 
fpoiled, elfe he took more than his fhare, and 
robbed others. And indeed it was a foolilh 
thing, as well as difhoneft, to hoard up more 
l than 

Of Civil-Government. 235 
than he could make ufe of. If he gave away 
a part to any body elfe, fo that it perifhed 
not ufelefly in his poffefTion, thefe he alfo 
made ufe of. And if he alfo bartered away 
plums, that would have rotted in a week, 
for nuts that would lafl good for his eating 
a whole year, he did no injury ; he wailed 
not the common flock ; deflroyed no part of 
the portion of goods that belonged to others, 
fo long as nothing perifhed ufelefly in his 
hands. Again, if he would give his nuts 
for a piece of metal, pleafed with its co- 
lour; or exchange his fheep for fhells, or 
wool for a fparkling pebble or a diamond, and 
keep thofe by him all his life, he invaded 
not the right of others, he might heap up 
as much of thefe durable things as he pleafed; 
the exceeding of the bounds cfh'is juft property 
not lying in the largenefs of his poMeilion, 
but the perifbing of any thing ufelefly in it. 

§.47. And thus came in the ufe of mo?iey 9 
fome lafling thing that men might keep witn- 
out fpoiling, and that by mutual confent men 
would take in exchange for the truly ufefu!, 
but perifhable fupports of life. 

§.48. And as different degrees of induflry 
were apt to give men pofTeffions in different 
proportions, fo this invention of money gave 
them the opportunity to continue and en- 
large them : for fuppoiing an ifland, feparate 
from all pofhble commerce with the reft of 
the world, wherein there were but an hun- 
dred families, but there were fheep, horfes 


236 Of Civil-Government. 

2nd cows, with other ufeful animals, whol- 
fome fruits, and land enough for corn for a 
hundred thoufand times as many, but no- 
thing in the itland, either becaufe of its com- 
monnefs, or perifhablenefs, fit to fupply the 
place of money ; what reafon could any one 
have there to enlarge his poiTeffions beyond 
the ufe of his family, and a plentiful fupply 
to its conjumption, either in what their own 
induftry produced, or they could barter for 
like perimable, ufeful commodities, with 
others ? Where there is not fome thing, both 
lafting and fcarce, and fo valuable to be 
hoarded up, there men will be apt to enlarge 
their pojj'ejjions of land, were it never fo rich, 
never fo free for them to take : for I afk, 
what would a man value ten thoufand, or an. 
hundred thoufand acres of excellent land, 
ready cultivated, and well flocked too with 
cattle, in the middle of the inland parts of 
America, where he had no hopes of com- 
merce with other parts of the world, to draw 
money to him by the fale of the product. ? It 
would not be worth the inclofing, and we 
fhould fee him give up again to the wild 
common of nature, whatever was more than 
would fupply the conveniencies of life to be 
had there for him and his family. 

^, 49. Thus in the beginning all the world 
was America, and more fo than that is now ; 
for no fuch thing as money was any where 
known. Find out fomething that hath the 

Of Civil-Government. 237 

ufe and value of money amongft his neighbours, 
you (hall fee the fame man will begin pre- 
iently to enlarge his poffeflions. 

§. 50. But lince gold and filver, being 
little ufeful to the life of man in proportion 
to food, raiment, and carriage, has its value 
only from the confent of men, whereof 
labour yet makes, in great part, the meafure, it 
is plain, that men have agreed to a difpro- 
portionate and unequal poffejjion of the earth, 
they having, by a tacit and voluntary con- 
fent, found out a way how a man may fairly 
poflefs more land than he himfelf can ufe 
the product of, by receiving in exchange for 
the overplus gold and filver, which may 
be hoarded up without injury to any one; 
thefe metals not fpoiling or decaying in the 
hands of the poffefTor. This partage of 
things in an inequality of private poifeffions, 
men have made practicable out of the bounds 
of fociety, and without compact, only by put- 
ting a value on gold and filver, and tacitly 
agreeing in the ufe of money : for in go- 
vernments, the laws regulate the right of 
property, and the pofTeflion of land is deter- 
mined by pofitive conftitutions. 

§. 51. And thus, I think, it is very eafy 
to conceive, without any difficulty, how labour 
could at firfi begin a title of property in the 
common things of nature, and how the fpend- 
ing it upon our ufes bounded it. So that 
there could then be no reafon of quarrelling 


238 Of Civil-Government. 
about title, nor any doubt about the large- 
neis of poilcflion it gave. Right and con- 
veniency went together -, for as a man had a 
right to ali he could employ his labour upon, 
ib he had no temptation to labour for more 
than he could make ufe of. This left no room 
for con troverfy about the title, nor for incroach- 
ment on the right of others ; what portion a 
man carved to himfelf, was eafily feen ; and 
it was ufelefs, as well as difhoneft, to carve 
himfelf too much, or take more than he 


Of Paternal Power. 

§. 52. T T may perhaps be cenfured as an 
JL impertinent criticifm, in a difcourfe 
of this nature, to find fault with words and 
names, that have obtained in the world : 
and yet poffibly it may not be amifs to offer 
new ones, when the old are apt to lead men 
into miftakes, as this of paternal power pro- 
bably has done, which feems fo to place the 
power of parents over their children wholly 
in the father, as if the mother had no (hare 
in it ; whereas, if we confult reafon or reve- 
lation, we fhall find, {he hath an equal title. 
This may give one reafon to afk, whether 
this might not be more properly called pa- 
rental power ? for whatever obligation nature 


Of Civil-Government. 239 
and the right of generation lays on children, 
it mull certainly bind them equal to both 
the concurrent caufes of it. And accordingly 
. we fee the politive law of God every where 
joins them together, without di{lin6tion>wheii 
it commands the obedience of children, Ho- 
nour thy father and thy mother, Excd. xx. 12. 
Whofoever curfeth his father or his mother, Lev. 
xx. 9. Te fiall fear every man his mother and 
bis father, Lev. xix. 3. Children, obey your 
parents, Sec. Eph. vi. 1. is the flile of the 
Old and New Teftament. 

§. 53. Had but this one thing been well 
confidered, without looking any deeper into 
the matter, it might perhaps have kept men. 
from running into thofe grofs miftakes, they 
have made, about this power of parents ; 
which, however it might, without any great 
harfhnefs, bear the name of abfolute domi- 
nion, and regal authority, when under the 
title of paternal power it feemed appropriated 
to the father, would yet have founded but 
oddly, and in the very name (hewn the ab- 
furdity, if this fuppofed abfolute power over 
children had been called parental; and thereby 
have difcovered, that it belonged to the mo- Jj. ty 
ther too : for it will but very ill ferve the 
turn of thofe men, who contend fo much for 
the abfolute power and authority of the father- 
hood, as they call it, that the mother mould 
have any mare in it ; and it would have but 
ill fupported the monarchy they contend for, 

when ' 

24^ Of Civil-Government. 

when by the very name it appeared, that that 
fundamental authority, from whence they 
would derive their government of a fingle 
per foil only, was not placed in one, but two 
perfons jointly. But to let this of names 

§. 54. Though I have faid above, Chap. IL 
'That all men by nature are equal, I cannot be 
fuppofed to underfland all forts of equality : 
age or virtue may give men a juft precedency : 
excellency of parts and merit may place others 
above the common level : birth may fubject 
fome, and alliance or benefits others, to pay 
an obfervance to thofe to whom nature, gra- 
titude, or other refpec~ts, may have made it 
due : and yet all this confifts with the equa- 
lity, which all men are in, in refpect of 
jurifdiction or dominion one over another ; 
which was the equcHty I there fpoke of, as 
proper to the bufinefs in hand, being that 
equal right, that every man hath, to his natural 
freedom, without being fubjec~ted to the will 
or authority of any other man. 

§. 55. Children, I confefs, are not born in 
this full ftate of equality, though they are 
born to it. Their parents have a fort of 
rule and jurifdiclion over them, when they 
come into the world, and for fome time 
after ; but it is but a temporary one. The 
bonds of this fubjeclion are like the fwaddling 
clothes they art wrapt up in, and fupported 
by, in the weaknefs of their infancy : age and 


Of Civil-Government. 241 

reafon as they grow up, loofen them, till at 
length they drop quite off, and leave a man 
at his own free difpofal. 

§. 56. Adam was created a perfect man, 
his body and mind in full poffeffion of their 
ftrength and reafon, and fo was capable, 
from the fir/l inffant of his being to provide 
for his own fupport and prefervation, and 
govern his actions according to the dictates 
of the law of reafon which God had im- 
planted in him. From him the world is 
peopled with his defendants, who are all 
born infants, weak and helplefs, without 
knowledge or underftanding : but to fupply 
the defects of this imperfect ftate, till the 
improvement of growth and age hath removed 
them, Adam and Eve, and after them all 
parents were, by the law of nature, under an 
obligation to preferve, ?iourifo, and educate the 
children they had begotten ; not as their own 
workmanfhip, but the workmanfhip of their 
own maker, the Almighty, to whom they 
were to be accountable for them. 

§. 5j> The law, that was to govern Adam, 
was the fame that was to govern all his 
polterity, the law of reafon. But his off- 
spring having another way of entrance into 
the world, different from him, by 'tf natural 
birth, that produced them ignorant and 
without the ufe of reafon, they were not 
prefently under that law ; for no body can 
be under a law, which is not promulgated x 

R t© 

242 Of Civil-Government. 

to him ; and this law being promulgated or 
made known by reafon only, he that is not 
come to the ufe of his reafon, cannot be faid 
to be wider this law ; and Adams children, 
being not prefently as foon as born under this 
law of reafon, were not prefently free : for 
law, in its true notion, is not fo much the 
limitation as the direction of a free and in~ 
tellige?it agent to his proper intereft, and pre- 
fcribes no farther than is for the general good 
of thofe under that law : could they be hap- 
pier without it, the law, as an ufelefs thing, 
would of itfelf vanifh ; and that ill deferves 
the name of confinement which hedges us 
in only from bogs and precipices. 9o that, 
however it may be miftaken, the e?id of law 
is not to abolifh or reftrain, but to pnferve 
and enlarge freedom : for in all the ftates of 
created beings capable of laws, where there 
is no law, there is no freedom : for liberty is, to 
be free from reftrain t and violence from 
others ; which cannot be, where there is no 
law : but freedom is not, as we are told, a 
liberty for every man to do what he lifts : (for 
who could be free, when every other man's 
humour might domineer over him ?) but a 
liberty to difpofe, and order as he lifts, his 
perfon, actions, pofieffions, and his whole 
property, within the allowance of thofe laws 
under which he is, and therein not to be 
fubject to the arbitrary will of another, but 
freely follow his own. 


Of Civil-Government. 243 

§.58. The power, then, that parents have 
over their children, arifes from that duty 
which is incumbent on them, to take care 
of their off-fpring, during the imperfect ftate 
of childhood. To inform the mind, and 
govern the actions of their yet ignorant non- 
age, till reafon mail take its place, and eafe 
them of that trouble, is what the children 
want, and the parents are bound to : for God 
having given man an underflanding to direct 
his actions, has allowed him a freedom of 
will, and liberty of acting, as properly be- 
longing thereunto, within the bounds of that 
law he is under. But whilft, he is in an 
eftate, wherein he has not under/landing of 
his own to direct his will, he is not to have 
any will of his own to follow : he that im- 
derjlands for him, mud will for him too; he 
muft prefcribe to his will, and regulate his 
actions; but when he comes to the eftate 
that made his father a freeman, the fon is a 
freejnan too. 

§. 59. This holds in all the laws a man is 
under, whether natural or civil. Is a man 
under the law of nature ? What made him free 
of that law ? what gave him a free difpofing 
of his property, according to his own will, 
within the compafs of that law ? I anfwer, 
a ftate of maturity wherein he might be fup- 
pofed capable to know that law, that {0 he 
might keep his actions within the bounds of 
it. When he has acquired that ftate, he is 
R 2 prefumed 

244 O p Civil-Government. 

prefumed to know how far that law is to 
be his guide, and how far he may make ufe 
of his freedom, and fo comes to have it - 3 
till then, fome body elfe mud guide him, 
who is prefumed to know how far the law 
allows a liberty. If fuch a flate of reafon, 
fuch an age of difcretion made him free ', the 
fame mall make his fon free too. Is a man 
under the law of England? What made him 
free of that law ? that is, to have the liberty 
to difpofe of his actions and polTeflions ac- 
cording to his own will, within the permiflion 
of that law ? A capacity of knowing that 
law - y which is fuppofed by that law, at the 
age of one and twenty years, and in fome 
cafes fooner. If this made the father free, 
it (hall make the fon free too. Till then we 
fee the law allows the fon to have no will, 
but he is to be guided by the will of his 
father or guardian, who is to underfrand for 
him. And if the father die, and fail to fub- 
flitute a deputy in his truft ; if he hath not 
provided a tutor, to govern his fon, during 
his minority, during his want of undemand- 
ing, the law takes care to do it ; fome other 
mufl: govern him, and be a will to him, till 
he hath attained to a Jiate of freedom, and 
his undemanding be fit to take the govern- 
ment of his will. But after that, the father 
and fon are equally free as much as tutor 
and pupil after nonage ; equally fubjects of 
the fame law together, without any dominion 


Of Civil-Government. 245 
eft in the father over the life, liberty, or 
eftate of his fori, whether they be only in 
the ftate and under the law of nature, or 
under the pofitive laws of an eftablifhed 

§. 60. But if, through defects that may 
happen out of the ordinary courfe of nature* 
any one comes not to fuch a degree of rea- 
fon, wherein Jie might be fuppofed capable 
of knowing the law, and fo living within 
the rules of it, he is never capable of being a 
free man, he is never let loofe to the difpofure 
of his own will (becaufe he knows no bounds 
to it, has not understanding, its proper guide) 
but is continued under the tuition and go- 
vernment of others, all the time his own 
underftanding is uncapable of that charge. 
And fo lunatics and ideots are never fet free 
from the government of their parents ; chil- 
dren, who are not as yet come unto thofe years 
whereat they may have ; and innocents which 
are excluded by a natural defect from ever 
having; thirdly, madmen, which for the pre- 
fent cannot poj/ibly have the ufe of right reafon 
to guide tbemfelves, have for their guide, the 
reafon that guideth other men which are tutors 
over them, to feek and procure their good for 
them, fays Hooker, Eccl. Pol. lib. i. feci. 7. 
All which feems no more than that duty, 
which God and nature has laid on man, as 
well as other creatures, to preferve their ofF- 
fpring, till they can be able to £hift for them- 
R 3 felves, 

246 Of Civil-Government. 

felves, and will fcarce amount to an inftance 
or proof of parents regal authority. 

§. 6 1 . Thus we are born free, as we are 
born rational ; not that we have actually the 
exercife of either : age, that brings one, brings 
with it the other too. And thus we fee how 
natural freedom and fub) eel ion to parents may 
confift together, and are both founded on the 
fame principle. A child is free by his fa- 
ther's title, by his father's understanding, 
which is to govern him till he hath it of 
his own. The freedom of a man at years of 
difcretion, and the fubjeclion of a child to his 
pareiits, whilft yet fhort of that age, are fo 
confifcent, and fo diftinguimable, that the 
moft blinded contenders for monarchy, by 
right of fatherhood, cannot mifs this difference-, 
the moll obflinate cannot but allow their 
confiftency : for were their doctrine all true, 
were the right heir of Adam now known, 
and by that title fettled a monarch in his 
throne, inverted with all the abfolute unli- 
mited power Sir Robert Filmer talks of; if 
he fhould die as foon as his heir were born, 
muft not the child, notwithstanding he were 
never fo free, never fo much fovereign, be 
in fubje&ion to his mother and nurfe, to 
tutors and governors, till age and education 
brought him reafon and ability to govern 
himielf and others ? 'The neceiiities of his 
life, the health of his body, and the infor- 
mation of his mind, would require him to be 


Of Civil-Government. 247 

directed by the will of others, and not his 
own ; and yet will any one think, that this 
reftraint and fubjeclion were inconiiftent with, 
or fpoiled him of that liberty or fovereignty 
he had a right to, or gave away his empire 
to thofe who had the -government of his 
nonage ? This government over him only 
prepared him the better and fooner for it. 
If any body fhould afk me, when my fon is 
of age to be free? I mall anfwer, jull when 
his monarch is of age to govern. , But at 
what time, fays the judicious Hooker, Eccl. 
Pol. 1. i. feci. 6. a man may be /aid to have 
attained fo far forth the ufe of reafon, as fuf- 
ficeth to make him capable of thofe laws whereby 
he is then bound to guide his actions : this is a 
great deal ?nore eafy for fenfe to difcem, than 
for any one by fkill and learning to determine. 

§. 62. Common-wealths themfelves take 
notice of, and allow, that there is a time when 
men are to begin to ac~l like free men, and 
therefore till that time require not oaths of 
fealty, or allegiance, or other public owning 
of, or fubmiffion to the government of their 

§. 63. The freedom then of man, and li- 
berty of acting according to his own will, is 
grounded on his having reafon, which is able 
to innruct him in that law he is to Severn 
himfelf by, and make him know how far he 
is left to the freedom of his own will. To 
turn him loofe to an unreftrained liberty, 

R 4 before 

248 Of Civil-Government. 

before he has reafon to guide him, is not the 
allowing him the privilege of his nature to, 
be free ; but to thruft him out amongft brutes, 
and abandon him to a ftate as wretched, and 
as much beneath that of a man, as their's. 
This is that which puts the authority into 
the parents hands to govern the minority of 
their children. God hath made it their 
bufmefs to employ this care on their ofF- 
fpring, and hath placed in them fuitable 
inclinations of tendernefs and concern to 
temper this power, to apply it, as his wifdom 
defigned it, to the children's good, as long as 
they mould need to be under if. 

§. 64. But what reafon can hence advance 
this care of the parents due to their off-fpring 
into an abfolute arbitrary dominion of the fa- 
ther, whole power reaches no farther, than 
by fuch a discipline, as he rinds mod: ef- 
fectual, to give fuch ftrength and health to 
their bodies, fuch vigour and rectitude to their 
minds, as may heft fit his children to be moft 
ufeful to themfelves and others; and, if it 
be necefTary to his condition, to make them 
work, when they are able, for their swn 
fubfiitence. But in this power the mother 
too has her mare with the father. 

§. 65. Nay, this power lb little belongs to 
the father by any peculiar right of nature, 
but only as he is guardian of his children, 
that when he quits his care of ihem, he lofes 
his power over them, which goes along with 


Of Civil-Government. 249 

their nourishment and education, to which 
it is inieparably annexed ; and it belongs as 
much to the fofier-father of an expofed child, 
as to the natural father of another. So little 
power does the bare ac~l of begetting give a 
man over his iflue ; if all his care ends there, 
and this be all the title he hath to the name 
and authority of a father. And what will 
become of this paternal power in that part of 
the world, where one woman hath more than 
one hufband at a time ? or in thofe parts of 
America, where, when the hulband and wife 
part, which happens frequently, the children 
are all left to the mother, follow her, and 
are wholly under her care and proviiion ? If 
the father die whilfl the children are young, 
do they not naturally every where owe the 
fame obedience to their mother, during their 
minority, as to their father were he alive? 
and will any one fay, that the mother hath 
a legiflative power over her children ? that fhe 
can make (binding rules, which mall be of 
perpetual obligation, by which they ought to 
regulate all the concerns of their property, 
and bound their liberty all the courfe of their 
lives ? or can me inforce the obfervation of 
them with capital punimments ? for this is 
the proper power of the magi/Irate, of which 
the father hath not fo much as the Shadow. 
His command over his children is but tem- 
porary, and reaches not their life or pro- 
perty : it is but a help to the weaknefs and 


250 Of Civil-Government. 

imperfection of their nonage, a difeiplinc 
neceflary to their education : and though a 
father may difpofe of his own porTeffions as 
he pleafes, when his children are out of 
danger of perifhing for want, yet his power 
extends not to the lives or goods, which 
either their own induflry, or another's bounty 
has made their's ; nor to their liberty neither, 
when they are once arrived to the infranchife- 
ment of the years of difcretion. The father s 
empire then ceafes, and he can from thence 
forwards no more difpofe of the liberty of his 
fon, than that of any other man : and it muft 
be far from an abiolute or perpetual jurif- 
diction, from which a man may withdraw 
himfelf, having licence from divine autho- 
rity to leave father and mother, and cleave to 
his wife. 

§. 66. But though there be a time when 
a child comes to be as free horn fubjeclion to 
the will and command of his father, as the 
father himfelf is free from fubjection to the 
will of any body clfc, and they are each 
under no other reftraint, but that which is 
common to them both, whether it be the 
law of nature, or municipal law of their coun- 
try; yet this freedom exempts not a fon from 
that honour which he ought, by the law of 
God and nature, to pay his parents. God 
having made the parents instruments in his 
great defign of continuing the race of man- 
kind, and the occafions of life to their chil- 
dren -, 

Of Civil-Government. 251 

dren ; as he hath laid on them an obligation 
to nourifh, preferve, and bring up their off- 
spring ; lb he has laid on the children a per- 
petual obligation of honouring their parents, 
which containing in it an inward efteem and 
reverence to be Shewn by all outward ex- 
preiiions, ties up the child from any thing 
that may ever injure or affront, difturb or 
endanger, the happinefs or life of thole from 
whom he received his ; and engages him in 
all actions of defence, relief, afliftance and 
comfort of thofe, by whofe means he entered 
into being, and has been made capable of 
any enjoyments of life : from this obligation 
no flate, no freedom can abfolve children. 
But this is very far from giving parents a 
power of command over their children, or 
an authority to make laws and difpofs as they 
pleafe of their lives or liberties. It is one 
thing to owe honour, rcfpect, gratitude and 
affiftance ; another to require an abfolute 
obedience and fubmiffion. The honour due 
to parents, a monarch in his throne owes his 
mother -, and yet this leffens not his autho- 
rity, nor fubje&s him to her government. 

§. 67. The fubjeclion of a minor places in 
the father a temporary government, which 
terminates with the minority of the child : 
and the honour due from a child, places in the 
parents a perpetual right to refpecl, reve- 
rence, Support and compliance too, more or 
lefs, as the father's care, con 1 , and kindnefs 


252 Of Civil-Government. 
in his education, has been more or lefs. This 
ends not with minority, but holds in all parts 
and conditions of a man's life. The want 
of diftinguifhing thefe two powers, viz. that 
which the father hath in the right of tuition, 
during minority, and the right of honour all 
his life, may perhaps have caufed a great 
part of the miftakes about this matter : for 
to fpeak properly of them, the firfh of thefe 
is rather the privilege of children, and duty 
of parents, than any prerogative of paternal 
power. The nourifhment and education of 
their children is a charge fo incumbent on 
parents for their children's good, that nothing 
can abfolve them from taking care of it : and 
though the power of commanding and chajlijing 
them go along with it, yet God hath woven 
into the principles of human nature fuch a 
tendernefs for their ofF-fpring, that there is 
]ittl& fear that parents mould ufe their power 
with too much rigour ; the excefs is feidom 
on the fevere fide, the flrong byafs of nature 
drawing the other way. And therefore God 
almighty when he would exprefs his. gentle 
dealing with the Ifraelites, he tells them, 
that though he chaiiened them, he chajlened 
them as a man chajiens his fin, Deut. viii. 5. 
/. e. with tendernefs and affection, and kept 
them under no feverer difcipline than what 
was absolutely beft for them, and had been 
lefs kindnefs to have Slackened. This is that 
power to which children are commanded ahe* 


Of Civil-Government.' 253 
dience, that the pains and care of their pa- 
rents may not be increafed, or ill rewarded. 

§. 68. On the other fide, honour and fup- 
port, all that which gratitude requires to re- 
turn for the benefits received by and from 
them, is the indifpenfible* duty of the child, 
and the proper privilege of the parents. This 
is intended for the parents advantage, as the 
other is for the child's ; though education, 
the parents duty, feems to have moft power, 
becaufe the ignorance and infirmities of child- 
hood ftand in need of reftraint and correction; 
which is a vifible exercife of rule, and a kind 
of dominion. And that duty which is com- 
prehended in the word honour, requires lefs 
obedience, though the obligation be ftronger 
on grown, than younger children : for who 
can think the command, Children obey your 
parents, requires in a man, that has children 
of his own, the fame fubmiffion to his father, 
as it does in his yet young children to him ; 
and that by this precept he were bound to 
obey all his father's commands, if, out of a 
conceit of authority, he mould have the m- 
difcretion to treat him! as a boy ? 

§. 69. The firft part then of paternal power* 
or rather duty, which is education, belongs fo 
to the father, that it terminates at a certain 
feafon ; when the bufinefs of education is 
over, it ceafes of itfelf, and is alfo alienable 
before : for a man may put the tuition of 
his fon in other hands; and he that has made 

his . 

254 O p Civil-Government. 
his fon an apprentice to another, has difcharged 
him, during that time, of a great part of his 
obedience both to himfelf and to his mother. 
But all the duty of honour ', the other part, 
remains never the lefs entire to them ; no- 
thing can cancel that : it is fo infeparable 
from them both, that the father's authority 
cannot difpofTefs the mother of this right, 
nor can any man difcharge his fon from ho- 
nouring her that bore him. But both thefe 
are very far from a power to make laws, 
and inforcing them with penalties, that may 
reach eilate, liberty, limbs and life. The 
power of commanding ends with nonage ; 
and though, after that, honour and refpect, 
fupport and defence, and whatfoever gra- 
titude can oblige a man to, for the higher! 
benefits he is naturally capable of, be always 
due from a fon to his parents ; yet all this 
puts no fcepter into the father's hand, no 
fovereign power of commanding. He has 
no dominion over his fon's property, or 
actions ; nor any right, that his will mould 
prefcribe to his fon's in all things ; however 
it may become his fon in many things, not 
very inconvenient to him and his family, to 
pay a deference to it. 

§.70. A man may owe honour and refpect 
to an ancient, or wife man ; defence to his 
child or friend ; relief and fupport to the 
diftrelfed ; and gratitude to a benefactor, to 
fuch a degree, that all he has, all he can do, 


Of Civil-Government. 255 

cannot fufficiently pay it : but all thefe give 
no authority, no right to any one, of making 
laws over him from whom they are owing* 
And it is plain, all this is due not only to 
the bare title of father ; not only becaufe, 
as has been faid, it is owing to the mother 
too; but becaufe thefe obligations to parents, 
and the degrees of what is required of chil- 
dren, mav be varied by the different care 
and kindnefs, trouble and expence, which is 
often employed upon one child more than 

§.71. This fhews the reafon how it comes 
to pafs, that parents in Jocieties, where Vtliey 
themfelves are fubjects, retain a power over 
their children, and have as much right to 
their fubjection, as thofe who are in the fiate 
of nature. Which could not poffibly be, if 
all political power were only paternal, and 
that in truth they were one and the fame 
thing : for then, all paternal power being in 
the prince, the fubject could naturally have 
none of it. But thefe two powers, political 
and paternal, are fo perfectly diflinct and 
feparate -, are built upon fo different foun- 
dations, and given to fo different ends, that 
every fubject that is a father, has as much 
a paternal power over his children, as the 
prince has over his': and every prince, that 
has parents, owes them as much filial duty 
and obedience, as the meaneft of his fubjects 
do to their's; and can therefore contain not any 

3 P art ' 

256 Of Civil-Government. 

part or degree of that kind of dominion* 
which a prince or magiftrate has over his 

§. 72. Though the obligation on the pa- 
rents to bring up their children, and the ob- 
ligation on children to honour their parents, 
contain all the power on the one hand, and 
fubmiffion on the other, which are proper to 
this relation, yet there is another power ordi- 
narily in the father, whereby he has a tie on 
the obedience of his children ; which tho' 
it be common to him with other men, yet 
the occaiions of (hewing it, almoft constantly 
happening to fathers in their private familiesi 
and the.inftances of it elfewhere being rare, 
and lefs taken notice of, it paffes in the world 
for a part of paternal jurifditlion. And this 
is the power men generally have to befiow 
their ejiates on thofe who pleafe them beft ; 
the pofTeffion of the father being the ex- 
pectation and inheritance of the children, 
ordinarily in certain proportions, according 
to the law and cuftom of each country ; yet 
it is commonly in the father's power to 
beftow it with a more fparing or liberal 
hand, according as the behaviour of this or 
that child hath comported with his will and 

§. 73. This is no fmall tie on the obe- 
dience of children : and there being always 
annexed to the enjoyment of land, a fub- 
mitiion to the government of the country, 


Of Civil-Government. 257 
of which that land is a part ; it has been 
commonly fuppofed, that a father could oblige 
his pojierity to that government, of which he 
himfelf was a fubjeet, and that his compact 
held them ; whereas, it being only a necef- 
fary condition annexed to the land, and the 
inheritance of an eflate which is under that 
government, reaches only thofe who will take 
it on that condition, and fo is no natural tie 
or engagement, but a voluntary fubmiflion : 
for every mans children being by nature as 
free as himfelf, or any of his anceflors ever 
were, may, whilfl they are in that freedom, 
choofe what fociety they will join themfelves 
to, what common-wealth they will put 
■ themfelves under. But if they will enjoy 
the inheritance of their anceflors, they muft 
take it on the fame terms their anceflors had 
it, and fubmit to all the conditions annexed 
to fuch a poffeflion. By this power indeed 
fathers oblige their children to obedience to 
themfelves, even when they are pafl minority, 
and mofl commonly too fubjecl: them to this 
or that political power : but neither of thefe 
by any peculiar right of fatherhood, but by 
the reward they have in their hands to in- 
force and recompence fuch a compliance; 
and is no more power than what a French 
man has over an Englifo man, who by the 
hopes of an eflate he will leave him, will 
certainly have a flrong tie on his obedience : 
and if, when it is left him, he will enjoy it, 

S he 

258 Of Civil-Government. 

he muft certainly take it upon the conditions 
annexed to the pofjejjion of land in that 
country where it lies, whether it be France 
or England. 

§. 74. To conclude then, tho' the father s 
power of commanding extends no farther 
than the minority of his children, and to a 
degree only fit for the difcipline and go- 
vernment of that age ; and tho' that honour 
and refpecl, and all that which the Latins 
called piety, which they indifpenfibly owe to 
their parents all their life-time, and in all 
eftates, with all that fupport and defence is 
due to them, gives the father no power of 
governing, /. e. making laws and enacting 
penalties on his children ; though by all this 
he has no dominion over the property or 
actions of his fon : yet it is obvious to con- 
ceive how eafy it was, in the firit ages of 
the world, and in places flill, where the 
thinnefs of people gives families leave to 
feparate into unpoffefTed quarters, and they 
have room to remove or plant themfelves in 
yet vacant habitations, for the father of the 
family to become the prince of * it ; he had . 


* It is no improbable opinion therefore, which the arch- 
philofopher was of, that the chief perfon in every houfhold 
was always, as it were, a king : fo when numbers of houf- 
holds joined themfelves in civil focieties together, kings 
were the firft kind of governors amongfl them, which is 
alfo, as it feemeth, the reafon why the name of fathers con- 
tinued ftill in them, who, of fathers, were made rulers ; as 


Op Civil-Government. 259 

been a ruler from the beginning of the in- 
fancy of his children : and fince without 
fome government it would be hard for them 
to live together, it was likelier!: it fhould, by 
the exprefs or tacit confent of the children 
when they were grown up,- be in the father, 
where it feemed without any change barely 
to continue ; when indeed nothing more was 
required to it, than the permitting the father 
to exercife alone, in his family, that executive 
power of the law of nature, which every 
free man naturally hath, and by that per- 
miffion refigning up to him a monarchical 
power, whilrr. they remained in it. But that 
this was not by any paternal right, but only 
by the confent of his children, is evident from 
hence, that no body doubts, but if a ftranger, 
whom chance or bufinefs had brought to his 
family, had there killed any of his children, 
or committed any other fact, he might con- 
demn and put him to death, or otherwife 
have punifhed him, as well as any of his 
S 2 children ; 

alfo the ancient cuftom of governors to do as Mdchizedec, 
and being kings, to exercife the office of priefts, which 
fathers did at the firft, grew perhaps by the fame occafion. 
Howbeit, this is not the only kind of regiment that has been 
received in the world. The inconveniences of one kind have 
caufed fundry others to be devifed ; fo that in a word, all 
public regiment, of what kind foever, feemeth evidently to rifen from the deliberate advice, confultation and com- 
pofition between men, judging it convenient and behoveful ; 
there being no impoffibility in nature confidered by itfelf, but 
that man might have lived without anv public regiment, 
Hooker's Eccl. P. lib. i. fed. 10. 

260 Of Civil-Government. 

children ; which it was impoffible he mould 
do by virtue of any paternal authority over 
one who was not his child, but by virtue of 
that executive power of the law of nature, 
which, as a man, he had a right to : and 
he alone could punifh him in his family, 
where the refpecl: of his children had laid 
by the exercife of fuch a power, to give way 
to the dignity and authority they were willing 
mould remain in him, above the reft of his 

§. 75. Thus it was eafy, and almoft na- 
tural for children, by a tacit, and fcarce avoid- 
able confent, to make way for the father 's 
authority and government. They had been 
accuftomed in their childhood to follow his 
direction, and to refer their little differences 
to him; and when they were men, who fitter 
to rule them ? Their little properties, and lefs 
covetoufnefs, feldom afforded greater con- 
troverfies ; and when any mould arife, where 
could they have a fitter umpire than he, by 
whofe care they had every one been fuftained 
and brought up, and who had a tendernefs 
for them all ? It is no wonder that they 
made no diftindtion betwixt minority and full 
age j nor looked after one and twenty, or 
any other age that might make them the free 
difpofers of themfelves and fortunes, when 
they could have no dcfire to be out of their 
pupilage: the government they had been 
under, during it, continued ftill to be more 


Of Civil-Government. 261 

their protection than reftraint; and they could 
no where find a greater fecurity to their 
peace, liberties, and fortunes, than in the 
rule of a father. 

§.76. Thus the natural fathers of families, 
by an infenfible change, became the politic 
monarchs of them too : and as they chanced 
to live long, and leave able and worthy heirs, 
for feveral fucceflions, or otherwife ; fo they 
laid the foundations of hereditary, or elective 
kingdoms, under feveral conftitutions and 
mannors, according as chance, contrivance, 
or occafions happened to mould them. But 
if princes have their titles in their fathers 
right, and it be a fufficient proof of the na- 
tural right of fathers to political authority, 
becaufe they commonly were thofe in whofe 
hands we find, de facto, the exercife of go- 
vernment : I fay, if this argument be good, 
it will as flrongly prove, that all princes, nay 
princes only, ought to be priefts, fince it is 
as certain, that in the beginning, the father 
cf the family was prieji, as that he was ruler 
in his own houjhold. 


Of 'Political or Civil Society. 

§■77* (~^ 0£* nav i n g made man fuch a 
\Jf creature, that in his own judg- 
ment, it was not good for him to be alone,' 

S 3 put 

262 Of Civil-Government*. 

put him under ftrong obligations of neceffity, 
convenience, and inclination to drive him 
into focicty, as well as fitted him with un- 
derftanding and language to continue and 
enjoy it. The firfl Jociety was between man 
and wife, which gave beginning to that be- 
tween parents and children -, to which, in 
time, that between mailer and fervant came 
to be added : and though all thefe might, 
and commonly did meet together, and make 
up but one family, wherein the matter or 
miftrefs of it had ibme fort of rule proper to 
a family -, each of thefe, or all together, 
came fhort of political fociety, as we fhall fee, 
if we conlider the different ends, ties, and 
bounds of each of thefe. 

§.78. Co7ijugal Jociety is made by a volun- 
tary compact between man and woman -, and 
tho' it confifl chiefly in fuch a communion 
and right in one another's bodies as is necef- 
fary to its chief end, procreation ; yet it 
draws with it mutual fupport and afliftance, 
and a communion of intereils too, as necef- 
fary not only to unite their care and affection, 
but alfo neceffary to their common off-fpring, 
who have a right to be nourished, and main- 
tained by them, till they are able to provide 
for thernfelves. 

§. 79. For the end of co?2Jim5lion, between 
male and female, being not barely procreation, 
but the continuation of the fpecies -, this con- 
junction betwixt male and female ought to 


Of Civil-Government. 263 

laft, even after procreation, fo long as is 
neceffary to the nourishment and fupport of 
the young ones, who are to be fuflained by 
thofe that got them, till they are able to 
Shift and provide for themfelves. This rule, 
which the infinite wife maker hath fet to 
the works of his hands, we find the inferior 
creatures Steadily obey. In thofe viviparous 
animals which feed on grafs, the conjunction 
between male and female lafts no longer than 
the very a& of copulation ; becaufe the teat 
of the dam being Sufficient to nourifh the 
young, till it be able to feed on grafs, the male 
only begets, but concerns not himfeif for the 
female or young, to whole fuilenance he can 
contribute nothing. But in beafts of prey 
the conjunction lafts longer : becaufe the dam 
not being able well to fubfift herfelf, and 
nourim her numerous off-Spring by her own 
prey alone, a more laborious, as well as more 
dangerous way of living, than by feeding on 
grafs, the afhftance of the male is neceifary 
to the maintenance of their common family, 
which cannot fublift till they are able to prey 
for themfelves, but by the joint care of male 
and female. The fame is to be obferved in 
all birds, (except Some domeflic ones, where 
plenty of food excufes the cock from feeding, 
and taking care of the young brood) whole 
young needing food in the neft, the cock and 
hen continue mates, till the young are able 

S 4 to 

264 Of Civil-Government. 

to ufe their wing, and provide for them- 

§. 80. And herein I think lies the chief, 
if not the only reafon, nvby the male and fe- 
male in mankind are tied to a longer conjunction 
than other creatures, viz. becaufe the female 
is capable of conceiving, and de faclo is 
commonly with child again, and brings forth 
too a new birth, Ion? before the former is 
out of a dependency for fupport on his pa- 
rents help, and able to fliift for himfelf, and 
has all the affiiiance is due to him from his 
parents : whereby the father, who is bound 
to take care for thofe he hath begot, is under 
an obligation to continue in conjugal fociety 
with the fame woman longer than other 
creatures, whofe young being able to fubfift 
of themfelves, before the time of procreation 
returns again, the conjugal bond diiiblves of 
itfelf, and they are at liberty, till Hymen at 
his ufual anniverfary feafon fummons them 
a^ain to chufe new mates. Wherein one 
cannot but admire the wifdom of the great 
Creator, who having given to man fore- 
light, and an ability to lay up for the future, 
as well as to fupply the prefent neceiTity, 
hath made it neceflary, that fociety of man 
and wife fhould be ?nore lajiing, than of male 
and female amongft other creatures ; that fo 
their induftry might be encouraged, and their 
interefl better united, to make provifion and 
lay up goods for their common iffue, which 


Of Civil-Government. 265 

uncertain mixture, or eafy and frequent fo- 
lutions of conjugal fociety would mightily 

§. 81. But tho' thefe are ties upon man- 
kind, which make the conjugal bonds more 
firm and lafting in man,- than the other 
fpecies of animals ; yet it would give one 
realbn to enquire, why this compact, where 
procreation and education are fecured, and 
inheritance taken care for, may not be made 
determinable, either by confent, or at a cer- 
tain time, or upon certain conditions, as well 
as any other voluntary compacts, there being 
no neceffity in the nature of the thing, nor 
to the ends of it, that it mould always be 
for life ; I mean, to fnch as are under no 
reftraint of any pontive law, which ordains all 
fuch contracts to be perpetual. 

§.82. But the hufband and wife, though 
they have but one common concern, yet 
having different under/landings, will un- 
avoidably fometimes have different wills too ; 
it therefore being necefiary that the laft de- 
termination, i. e. the rule, mould be placed 
fomewhere ; it naturally falls to the man's 
mare, as the abler and the ftronger. But 
this reaching but to the things of their com- 
mon intereft and property, leaves the wife in 
the full and free poifefTion of what by con- 
tract is her peculiar right, and gives the huf- 
band no more power over her life than me 
has over his - } the power of the hufband being 
4 fo 

266 Of Civil-Government. 

fo far from that of an abfolute monarch, that 
the wife has in many cafes a liberty to fe- 
parate from him, where natural right, or 
their contract allows it j whether that contract 
be made by themfelves in the ftate of nature, 
or by the caftoms or laws of the country 
they live in;, and the children upon fuch 
feparation fall to the father or mother's lot, 
as fuch contract does determine. 

§.83. For all the ends of marriage being 
to be obtained under politic government, as 
well as in the ftate of nature, the civil ma- 
giftrate doth not abridge the right or power of 
either naturally neceflary to thofe ends, viz. 
procreation and mutual fupport and affiftance 
whilft they are together ; but only decides 
any controverfy that may arife between, man 
and wife about them. If it were other wife, 
and that abfolute fovereignty and power of 
life and death naturally belonged to the huf- 
band, and were neceflary to the fociety between 
man and wife, there could be no matrimony 
in any of thofe countries where the hufband is 
allowed no fuch abfolute authority. But the 
ends of matrimony requiring no fuch power 
in the hufband, the condition of conjugal 
fociety put it not in him, it being not at all 
neceffary to that ftate. Conjugal fociety could 
fubfift and attain its ends without it j nay, 
community of goods, and the power over 
them, mutual affiftance and maintenance, and 
other things belonging to conjugal fociety, 


Of Civil-Government. 267 
might be varied and regulated by that con- 
tract which unites man and wife in that 
fociety, as far as may conrift with procreation 
and the bringing up of children till they 
could fhift for themfelves; nothing being 
neceffary to any fociety, that is not neceffary 
to the ends for which it is made. 

§.84. The fociety betwixt parents and chil- 
dren, and the diftinct rights and powers be- 
longing refpectively to them, I have treated 
of fo largely, in the foregoing chapter, that 
I (hall not here need to fay any thing of it. 
And I think it is plain, that it is far different 
from a politic fociety. 

§. 85. Majier and fervant are names as 
old as hiftory, but given to thofe of far dif- 
ferent condition ; for a freeman makes himfelf 
a fervant to another, by felling him, for a 
certain time, the fervice he undertakes to 
do, in exchange for wages he is to receive : 
and though this commonly puts him into the 
family of his mafter, and under the ordinary 
difcipline thereof -, yet it gives the mafter but 
a temporary power over him, and no greater 
than what is contained in the contract be- 
tween them. But there is another fort of 
fervants, which by a peculiar name we call 
Jlaves, who being captives taken in a juff. 
war, are by the right of nature fu bjeded to 
the abfolute dominion and arbitrary power 
of their matters. Thefe men having, as I 
fay, forfeited their lives, and with it their 
5 liberties, 

268 Of Civil-Government. 

liberties, and loft their eftates ; and being in 
the Jlate of Jlavery, not capable of any pro- 
perty, cannot in that ftate be confidered as 
any part of civil feciety -, the chief end whereof 
is the prefervation of property. 

§.86. Let us therefore con fid er a majler 
of a family with all thefe fubordinate rela- 
tions of wife, children, fervants, and Jlaves, 
united under the domeftic rule of a family ; 
which, what refemblance foever it may have 
in its order, offices, and number too, with a 
little common-wealth, yet is very far from 
it, both in its conflitution, power and end : 
or if it muft be thought a monarchy, and 
the paterfamilias the abfolute monarch in it, 
abfolute monarchy will have but a very 
Shattered and fhort power, when it is plain, 
by what has been faid before, that the majler 
cf the family has a very diftincl: and differently 
limited power, both as to time and extent, 
over thofe feveral perfons that are in it ; for 
excepting the Have (and the family is as 
much a family, and his power as paterfamilias 
as great, whether there be any llaves in his 
family or no) he has no legifiative power of 
life and death over any of them, and none 
too but what a miftrefs of a family may have as 
well as he. And he certainly can have no 
abfolute power over the whole family, who has 
but a very limited one over every individual 
in it. But how a family, or any other fo- 
ciety of men, differ from that which is pro- 

Of Civil-Government. 269 

perly political fociety, we (hall befl fee, by 
considering wherein political fociety itfelf 

§. 87. Man being born, as has been proved, 
with a title to perfect freedom, and an un- 
controlled enjoyment of all the rights and 
privileges of the law of nature, equally with 
any other man, or number of men in the 
world, hath by nature a power, not only to 
preferve his property, that is, his life, liberty 
and eftate, againft the injuries and attempts 
of other men; but to judge of, and puniffi 
the breaches of that law in others, as he is 
perfuaded the offence deferves, even with 
death itfelf, in crimes where the heinoufnefs 
of the fad, in his opinion, requires it. But 
becaufe no political fociety can be, nor fubfift,, 
without having in itfelf the power to pre- 
ferve the property, and in order thereunto, 
punifh the offences of all thofe of that fo- 
ciety ; there, and there only is political fo- 
ciety, where every one of the members hath 
quitted this natural power, refigned it up 
into the hands of the community in all cafes 
that exclude him not from appealing for pro- 
tection to the law eftabliihed by it. And 
thus all private judgment of every particular 
member being excluded, the community 
comes to be umpire, by fettled {landing rules, 
indifferent, and the fame to all parties ; and 
by men having authority from the commu- 

270 Of Civil-Government. 
nity, for the execution of thofe rules, decides 
all the differences that may happen between 
any members of that fociety concerning any 
matter of right ; and puniflies thofe offences 
which any member hath committed againft 
the fociety, with fuch penalties as the law 
has eftablifhed : whereby it is eafy to difcern, 
who are, and who are not, in political fociety 
together. Thofe who are united into one 
body, and have a common eftablifhed law 
and judicature to appeal to, with authority 
to decide controversies between them, and 
punifh offenders, are in civil fociety one with 
another : but thofe who have no fuch com- 
mon people, I mean on earth, are ftill in 
the ffate of nature, each being, where there 
is no other, judge for himfelf, and execu- 
tioner; which is, as I have before fhewed 
it, the perfect fate of ?iature. 

§. 88. And thus the common-wealth comes 
fey a power to fet down what punimment 
fhall belong to the feveral tranfgreffions which 
they think worthy of it, committed amongfl: 
the members of that fociety, (which is the 
power of making laws) as well as it has the 
power to puniih any injury done unto any of 
its members, by any one that is not of it, 
(which is the power of war and peace ;) and 
all this for the prefervation of the property 
of all the members of that fociety, as far as 
is poffible. But though every man who has 


Of Civil-Government. 271 

entered into civil fociety, and is become a 
member of any common -wealth, has thereby 
quitted his power to punifh offences, againft 
the law of nature, in profecution of his own 
private judgment, yet with the judgment of 
©ffences, which he has given up to the legif- 
lative in all cafes, where he can appeal to 
the magiftrate, he has given a right to the 
common- wealth to employ his force, for the 
execution of the judgments of the common- 
wealth, whenever he fhall be called to it; 
which indeed are his own judgments, they 
being made by himfelf, or his reprefentative. 
And herein we have the original of the legis- 
lative and executive power of civil fociety, which 
is to judge by (landing laws, how far offences 
are to be punifhed, when committed within 
the common-wealth ; and alfo to determine, 
by occafional judgments founded on the pre- 
fent circumftances of the fact, how far in- 
juries from without are to be vindicated; and 
in both thefe to employ all the force of all 
the members, when there fhall be need. 

§. 89. Where-ever therefore any number 
of men are fo united into one fociety, as to 
quit every one his executive power of the 
law of nature, and to refign it to the public, 
there and there only is a political, or civil 
fociety. And this is done, where-ever any 
number of men, in the ftate of nature, enter 
into fociety to make one people, one body 


272 Of Civil-Government. 

politic, under one fupreme government; or 
elfe when any one joins himfelf to, and in- 
corporates with any government already made : 
for hereby he authorizes the fociety, or which 
is all one, the legiflative thereof, to make 
laws for him, as the public good of the 
fociety mall require -, to the execution where- 
of, his own affiftance (as to his own decrees) 
is due. And this puts men out of a ftate of 
nature into that of a common-wealth, by fetting 
up a judge on earth, with authority to de- 
termine all the controversies, and redrefs the 
injuries that may happen to any member 
of the common- weal th ; which judge is the | 
■^legiflative, or magiflrates appointed by it. 
And where-ever there are any number of 
men, however affociated, that have no fuch 
decifive power to appeal to, there they are 
flill in the Jlate of ?iature. 

§. 90. Hence it is evident, that abfolnte 
monarchy, which by fome men is counted 
the only government in the world, is indeed 
inconfiftent ivith civil fociety, and fo can be 
no form of civil-government at all : for the 
end of chil fociety, being to avoid, and remedy 
thofe inconveniencies of the Hate of nature, 
which necelfarily follow from every man's 
being judge in his own cafe, by fetting up 
a known authority, to which every one of 
that fociety may appeal upon any injury re- 
ceived, or c'ontroverfy that may arife, and 


Of Ci vil-Gover n Ment. 273 

which every one of the * fociety ought to 
obey ; where-ever any perfons are, who have 
not fuch an authority to appeal to, for the 
decifion of any difference between them, 
there thofe perfons are itill in the Jlate of na- 
ture $ and lb is every abfohit-e prince, in refpect 
of thofe who are under his dominion. 

§.91. For he being fuppofed to have all, 
both legiilative and executive power in him- 
felf alone, there is no judge to be found, no 
appeal lies open to any one, who may fairly, 
and indifferently, and with authority decide, 
and from whofe decifion relief and redrefs 
may be expected of any injury or incon- 
viency, that may be fuifered from the prince, 
or by his order : fo that fuch a man, however 
in titled, Czar, or Grand Seignior, or how you 
pleafe, is as much in the fate of nature, with 
all under his dominion, as he is with the reft 
of mankind : for where-ever any two men 
are, who have no {landing rule, and common 
judge to appeal to on earth* for the de- 
termination of controverfies of right be- 
twixt them, there they are ftill in the fate 

T of 

* The public power of all fociety is above every foul 
contained in the fame fociety ; and the principal ufe of that 
power is, to give laws unto all hat are under it, which laws 
in fuch cafes we muft obey, unlets there be reafon fhewed 
A'hich may neceffarily inforce, that the law of reafon, ot 
>f God, doth enjoin the contrary, Hook. Eal. Pol. L i. 
\S. 16. 

274 ® F Civil-Government. 
of * nature, and under all the inconveniencies 
of it, with only this woful difference to the 
fubject, or rather flave of an abfolute prince : 
that whereas, in the ordinary ftate of nature, 
he has a liberty to judge of his right, and 
according to the bell: of his power, to main- 
tain it ; now, whenever his property is in- 
vaded by the will and order of his monarch, 
he has not only no appeal, as thofe in fociety 
ought to have, but as if he were degraded 
from the common ftate of rational creatures, 
is denied a liberty to judge of, or to defend! 
his right ; and fo is expofed to all the mifery 
and inconveniencies, that a man can fear from 


* To take away all fuch mutual grievances, injuries and 
wrongs, i. e. fuch as attend men in the ftate of nature, 
there was no way hut only by growing into compofition 
and agreement amongft themfelves, by ordaining fome kind 
of government public, and by yielding themfelves fubjedt 
thereunto, that unto whom they granted authority to rule 
and govern, by them the peace, tranquillity and happv 
.eftate of the reft might be procured. Men always knew 
that where force and injury was offered, they might be de- 
fenders of themfelves ; they knew that however men maj- 
feek their own commodity, yet if this were done with in- 
jury unto others, it was not to be fufFered, but by all men, 
and all good means to be withitood. Finally, they knew 
that no man might in reafon take upon him to determine 
his own right, and according to his own determination pro- 
ceed in maintenance thereof, in as much as every man i; 
towards himfelf, and them whom he greatly affects, partial ; 
and therefore that ftrifes and troubles would be endlefs. 
■ except they gave' their common confent, all to be ordered bj 
fome, whom they mould agree upon, without which confen ! 
there would be no reafon that one man fhould take upor 
him to be lord or judge over another, Hooker's Eccl. Pol, I. i 
fici. io. 

Of Civil-Government. 275 

one, who being in the unreftrained ftate of 
nature, is yet corrupted with flattery, and 
armed with power. 

§.92. For he that thinks abfolute power 
purifies mens blood, and corrects the bafenefs 
of human nature, need read but the hiftory 
of this, or any other age, to be convinced of 
the contrary. He that would have been in- 
folent and injurious in the woods of America, 
would not probably be much better in a 
throne; where perhaps learning and religion 
mall be found out to juftify all that he 
mail do to his fubjects, and the fword pre- 
fently filence all thofe that dare queftion it : 
for what the protection of abfolute monarchy is, 
what kind of fathers of their countries it 
makes princes to be, and to what a degree 
of happinefs and fecurity it carries civil fo- 
ciety, where this fort of government is grown 
to perfection, he that will look into the late 
relation of Ceylon, may ealily fee. 

§.93. In abfolute monarchies indeed, as well 
as other governments of the world, the fub- 
jects have an appeal to the law, and judges 
to decide any controversies, and reflrain any 
violence that may happen betwixt the Subjects 
themfelves, one amongft another. This every 
one thinks neceffary, and believes he deferves 
to be thought a declared enemy to fociety and 
mankind, who mould go about to take it 
away. But whether this be from a true love 
ef mankind and fociety, and fuch a charity as 

T 2 we 

276 Of Civil-Government. 

we owe all one to another, there is reafon to 
doubt : for this is no more than what every 
man, who loves his own power, profit, or 
greatnefs, may and naturally muft do, keep 
thofe animals from hurting, or deftroying one 
another, who labour and drudge only for his 
pleafure and advantage ; and fo are taken care 
of, not out of any love the matter has for 
them, but love of himfelf, and the profit they 
bring him : for if it be afked, what fecurity, 
what fence is there, in fuch a ftate, againji the 
violence and opprcjjion of this abfohite ruler ? 
the very queftion can fcarce be borne. They 
are ready to tell you, that it deferves death 
only to afk after fafety. Betwixt fubjecl and 
fubject, they will grant, there mufl be mea- 
fures, laws and judges, for their mutual peace 
and fecurity : but as for the ruler, he ought 
to be abfolute, and is above all fuch circum- 
ftances ; becaufe he has power to do more 
hurt and wrong, it is right when he does it. 
To afk how you may be guarded from harm, 
or injury, on that fide where the ftrongeft hand 
is to do it, is prefently the voice of faction and 
rebellion : as if when men quitting the ftate 
of nature entered into fociety, they agreed 
that all of them but one, mould be under the 
reftraint of laws, but that he mould ftill re- 
tain all the liberty of the ftate of nature, in- 
creafed with power, and made licentious by 
impunity. This is to think, that men are fo 
foolim, that they take care to avoid what mif- 
3 chiefs 

Of Civil-Government. 277 

chiefs may be done them by pole-cats, or foxes ; 
but are content, nay, think it fafety, to be de- 
voured by lions. 

§. 94. But whatever flatterers may talk to 
amufe people's understandings, it hinders not 
men from feeling ; and when they perceive, 
that any man, in what ftation foever, is out of 
the bounds of the civil fociety which they are 
of, and that they have no appeal on earth 
againft any harm, they may receive from him, 
they are apt to think themfelves in the ftate of 
nature, in refpect of him whom they find to 
be fo ; and to take care, as foon as they can, 
to have that fafety andfecurity in civil fociety r , 
for which it was firft instituted, and for which 
only they entered into it. And therefore, 
though perhaps at firft, (as Shall be mewed 
more at large hereafter in the following part 
of this difcourfe) fome one good and excellent 
man having got a pre-eminency amongfl the 
reft, had this deference paid to his goodnefs 
and virtue, as to a kind of natural authority, 
that the chief rule, with arbitration of their 
differences, by a tacit confent devolved into 
his hands, without any other caution, but the 
aiTurance they had of his uprightnefs and wif- 
dom ; yet when time, giving authority, and 
(as fome men would perfuade us) facrednefs of 
cuftoms, which the negligent, and unfore- 
feeing innocence of the firft ages began, had 
brought in fuccerTors of another Stamp, the 
people finding their properties not fecure under 

T 3 the 

278 Of Civil-Government. 

the government, as then it was, (whereas 
government has no other end but the prefer- 
vation of * property) could never be fafe nor 
at reit, nor think themfclves in civil fociety, till 
the legiflature was placed in collective bodies 
of men, call them fenate, parliament, or 
■what you pleafe. By which means every 
fingle perfon became fubject, equally with 
other the meaneft men, to thole laws, which 
he himfelf, as part .of the legiflative, had efla- 
blifhed ; nor could any one, by his own au- 
thority, avoid the force of the law, when once 
made; nor by any pretence of fuperiority plead 
exemption, thereby to licenfe his own, or the 
mifcarriages of any of his dependents, -f No 
man in civil fociety can be exempted front the laws 
of it : for if any man may do what he thinks 
fit, and there be no appeal on earth, for re- 
drefs or fecurity againft any harm he mall do ; 
I aik, whether he be not perfectly ftill in the 


* At the firft, when feme certain kind of regiment was 
once appointed, it may be that nothing was then farther 
thought upon for the manner of governing, but all permitted 
unto their wifdom and difcreticn, which were to rule,' till by 
experience they found this for all parts very inconvenient, fo 
as the thing which they had deviled for a remedy, did indeed 
but increafe the fore, which it mould have cured. They favv, 
that to live by one Man's will, became the caufe cj all -mens mifery. 
This conflrained them to come unto laws, wherein all men 
might fee their duty beforehand, and know the penalties of 
tranfgreffing them. Hooker's Eccl. Pel. 1. i. fed. 10. 

f Civil law being the aft of the whole body politic, doth 
therefore over-rule each feveral part of the fame body. Hooker 3 

Of Civil-Government. 279 

ftate of nature, and fo can be no part or mem- 
ber of that civil fociety ; unlefs any one will 
fay, the ftate of nature and civil fociety are 
one and the fame thing, which I have never 
yet found any one fo great a patron of anarchy 
as to affirm. 


Of the Beginning of Political Societies, 

§. 95. "]% /TEN being, as has been faid, by 
J.VX nature, all free, equal, and in- 
dependent, no one can be put out of this 
eftate, and fubjected to the political power of 
another, without his own confent. The only 
way whereby any one diverts himfelf of his 
natural liberty, and puts on the bonds of civil 
fociety, is by agreeing with other men to join 
and unite into a community, for their com- 
fortable, fafe, and peaceable living one 
amongft another, in a fecure enjoyment of 
their properties, and a greater fecurity againft 
any, that are not of it. This any number of 
men may do, becaufe it injures not the free- 
dom of the reft ; they are left as they were 
in the liberty of the ftate of nature. When 
any number of men have fo confented to make 
one community or government, they are thereby 
prefently incorporated, and make one body po- 
litic, wherein the majority have a right to act 
and conclude the reft. 

T 4 §. 96. 


280 Of Civil-Government. 

§. 96. For when any number of men have, 
by the confent of every individual, made a 
community, they have thereby made that com- 
munity one body, with a power to ad: as one 
body, which is only by the will and determi- 
nation of the majority : for that which acts 
any community, being only the confent of 
the individuals of it, and it being neceffary 
to that which is one body to move one way ; 
it is neceflary the body mould move that way 
whither the greater force carries it, which is 
the confent of the majority: or elfe it is im- 
poffible it mould act or continue one body, 
one community, which the content of every in- 
dividual that united into it, agreed that it 
fhould ; and fo every one is bound by that 
confent to be concluded by the majority. And 
therefore we fee, that in affemblies, im- 
powered to act by pofitive laws, where no 
number is fet by that pofitive law which im- 
powers them, the acl of the majority paffes for 
the act of the whole, and of courfe determines, 
as having, by the law of nature and reafon, the 
power of the whole. 

§. 97. And thus every man, by confenting 
with others to make one body politic under 
one government, puts himfelf under an obli- 
gation, to every one of that fociety, to fubmit 
to the determination of the majority, and to 
be concluded by it ; or elfe this original com- 
fact, whereby he with others incorporates 
into one fociety, would fignify nothing, and 


Of Civil-Government. 281 

be no compact, if he be left free, and under 
no other ties than he was in before in the 
ftate of nature. For'what appearance would 
there be of any compact ? what new engage- 
ment if he were no farther tied by any decrees 
of the fociety, than he himfelf thought fit, 
and did actually confent to ? This would be 
frill as great a liberty, as he himfelf had be- 
fore his compact, or any one elfe in the ftate 
of nature hath, who may fubmit himfelf, and 
confent to any acts of it if he thinks fit. 

§.98. For if the confent of the majority mall 
not, in reafon, be received as the aB of the 
whole, and conclude every individual ; nothing 
but the confent of every individual can make 
any thing to be the act of the whole : but 
fuch a confent is next to impoflible ever to be 
had, if we confider the infirmities of health, 
and avocations of buiinefs, which in a num- 
ber, though much lefs than that of a com- 
mon-wealth, will necefTarily keep many away 
from the public alfembly. To which if we 
add the variety of opinions, and contrariety 
of interefts, which unavoidably happen in all 
collections of men, the coming into fociety 
upon fuch terms would be only like Cato's 
coming into the theatre, only to go out again. 
Such a conftitution as this would make the 
mighty Leviathan of a fhorter duration, than 
the feebleft creatures, and not let it outlaft 
the day it was born in: which cannot be 
fuppoicd, till we can think, that rational crea- 

282 Of Civil-Government. 

tures fhould defire and conftitute focieties only 
to be diffolved : for where the majority can- 
not conclude the reft, there they cannot act 
as one body, and confequently will be im- 
mediately difTolved again. 

§. 99. Whofoever therefore out of a ftate 
of nature unite into a community, mull: be un- 
derftood to give up all the power, neceflary 
to the ends for which they unite into fociety, 
to the majority of the community, unlefs they 
exprelly agreed in any number greater than 
the majority. And this is done by barely 
agreeing to unite into one political fociety, which 
is all the compac~l that is, or needs be, between 
the individuals, that enter into, or make up 
a common-wealth. And thus that, which be- 
gins and actually conjiitutes any political fociety, 
is nothing but the confent of any number of 
freemen capable cf a majority to unite and 
incorporate into fuch a fociety. And this is 
that, and that only, which did, or could give 
beginning to any lawful government in the 

§. 100. To this I find two objections made. 

Firft, That there are no mjia?ices to be found 
in fory, of a company of men independent, and 
equal one amongfi another, that met together, and 
in this way began and fet up a government. 

Secondly, It is impofjible of right, that men 
fiould do fo, becaufe all ?ne?i being bom under 
government, they are iofubmit to that, and are 
not at liberty to begin a new one. 

%. 101. 

Of Civil-Government. 283 

§. 101. To the firft there is this to anfwer, 
That it is not at' all to be wondered, that 
bijlory gives us but a very little account of 
men, that lived together in the fate of Jiature. 
The inconveniences of that condition, and £/ 
the love and want of fociety, no fooner brought 
any number of them together, but they pre- 
fently united and incorporated, if they de- 
figned to continue together. And if we may 
not fuppofe men ever to have been in the Jlate 
of nature, becaufe we hear not much of them 
in fuch a ftate, we may as well fuppofe the 
armies of Salmanajfer or Xerxes were never 
children, becaufe we hear little of them, till 
they were men, and imbodied in armies. 
Government is every where antecedent to re- 
cords, and letters feldom come in amongft a 
people till a long continuation of civil fo- 
ciety has, by other more neceffary arts, pro- 
vided for their fafety, eafe, and plenty : and 
then they begin to look after the hiftory of 
their founders, and fearch into their original, 
when they have outlived the memory of it : 
for it is with common-wealths as with parti- 
cular perfons, they are commonly ignorant of 
their own births and infancies : and if they 
know any thing of their original, they are be- 
holden for it, to the accidental records that 
others have kept of it. And thofe that we have, 
of the beginning of any polities in the world, 
excepting that of the Jews, where God him- 
felf immediately interpofed, and which fa- 


284 Of Civil-Government. 
vours not at all paternal dominion, are all 
either plain inftances of fuch a beginning as 
I have mentioned, or at leaft have manifeft 
footfteps of it. 

§. 102. He muft /hew a ftrange inclination 
to deny evident matter of fact, when it agrees 
not with his hypothecs, who will not allow, 
that the beginning of Rome and Venice were 
by the uniting together of feveral men free 
and independent one of another, amongft 
whom there was no natural fuperiority or 
fubjeclion. And if Jofephus Acojlds word 
may be taken, he tells us, that in many parts 
of America there was no government at all. 
'There are great and apparent conjectures, fays 
he, that thefe men, fpeaki ng of thole of Peru, 
for a long time had neither kings nor common- 
wealths, but lived in troops, as they do this day 
in Florida, the Cheriquanas, thofe of Bralil, 
and many other nations, which have no certain 
kings, but as occafion is offered, in peace or war, 
they choofe their captains as they pleafe, 1. i. 
c. 25. If it be faid, that every man there 
was born fubjecl: to his father, or the head 
of his family ; that the fubjection due from 
a child to a father took not away his free- 
dom of uniting into what political fociety he 
thought fit, has been already proved. But 
be that as it will, thefe men, it is evident, 
were actually free ; and whatever fuperiority 
ibme politicians now would place in any of 
them, they themfelves claimed it not, but by 


Of Civil-Government. 285 

confent were all equal, till by the fame con- 
fent they fet rulers over themfelves. So that 
their politic focieties all began from a voluntary 
union, and the mutual agreement of men 
freely a&ing in the choice of their governors, 
and forms of government. • 

§. 103. And I hope thofe who went away 
from Sparta with Palantus, mentioned by 
fujlin, 1. iii. c. 4. will be allowed to have 
been freemen independent one of another, and 
to have fet up a government over themfelves, 
by their own confent. Thus I have given 
feveral examples, out of hiftory, of people free 
and in the flat e of nature, that being met to- 
gether incorporated and began a common- 
wealth. And if the want of fuch inftances 
be an argument to prove that government were 
not, nor could not be fo begun, I fuppofe the 
contenders for paternal empire were better 
let it alone, than urge it againft natural li- 
berty : for if they can give fo many inflances, 
out of hiftory, of governments begun upon 
paternal right, I think (though at bed an 
argument from what has been, to what 
mould of right be, has no great force) one 
might, without any great danger, yield them 
the caufe. But if I might advife them in the 
cafe, they would do well not to fearch too 
much into the original of governments, as thev 
have begun de facJo, left they mould find, at 
the foundation of moft of them, fomething 


2&6 Op Civil-Government. 
very little favourable to the defign they pro- 
mote, and fuch a power as they contend for. 

§. 104. But to conclude, reafon being plairi 
on our fide, that men are naturally free, and 
the examples of hiftory mewing, that the 
governments of the world, that were begun 
in peace, had their beginning laid on that 
foundation, and were made by the confent of 
the people; there can be little room for doubt, 
either where the right is, or what has been 
the opinion, or practice of mankind, about 
the firfl erecting of governments. 

§. 105. I will not deny, that if we look 
back as far as hiflory will direct us, towards 
the original of common-wealths, we mall ge- 
nerally find them under the government and 
adminiftration of one man. And I am alfo 
apt to believe, that where a family was 
numerous enough to fubfifl by itfelf, and 
continued entire together, without mixing 
with others," as it often happens, where there 
is much land, and few people, the govern- 
ment commonly began in the father : for 
the father having, by the law of nature, the 
fame power with every man elfe to punifli, 
as he thought fit, any offences againft that 
law, might thereby punifli his tranfgreffing 
children, even when they were men, and 
out of their pupilage ; and they were very 
likely to fubmit to his punifhment, and all 
join with him againft the offender, in their 
turns, giving him thereby power to execute 


Of Civil-Government. 2S7 

his fentence againfb any tranfgreffion, and fo 
in effect make him the law-maker, and go- 
vernor over all that remained in conjunction 
with his family. He was fitted: to be trufted ; 
paternal affection fecured their property and 
interefr. under his care ; and the cuftom of 
obeying him, in their childhood, made it 
eafier to fubmit to him, rather than to any 
other. If therefore they mull: have one to 
rule them, as government is hardly to be 
avoided amongft men that live together -, who 
fo likely to be the man as he that was their 
common father ; unlefs negligence, cruelty, 
or any other defect of mind or body made 
him unfit for it ? But when either the father 
died, and left his next heir, for want of 
age, wifdom, courage, or any other quali- 
ties, lefs fit for rule ; or where feveral fa- 
milies met, and confented to continue to- 
gether -, there, it is not to be doubted, but 
they ufed their natural freedom, to fet up 
him, whom they judged the ableft, and mofl 
likely, to rule well over them. Conformable 
hereunto we find the people of America, who 
(living out of the reach of the conquering 
fwords, and fpreading domination of the two 
great empires of Peru and Mexico) enjoyed 
their own natural freedom, though, ccctei~h 
paribus* they commonly prefer the heir of 
their deceafed king; yet if they find him 
any way weak, or uncapable, they pafs him 

bv > 

288 Of Civil-Government. 

by, and fet up the ftouteft and braveft man 
for their ruler. 

§. 1 06. Thus, though looking back as far 
as records give us any account of peopling 
the world, and the hiflory of nations, we 
commonly find the government to be in one 
hand ; yet it defiroys not that which I affirm, 
viz. that the beginning of politic fociety depends 
upon the confent of the individuals, to join 
into, and make one fociety j who, when 
they are thus incorporated, might fet up 
what form of government they thought fit. 
But this having given occafion to men to 
miftake, and think, that by nature govern- 
ment was monarchical, and belonged to the 
father, it may not be amifs here to confider, 
why people in the beginning generally pitched 
upon this form, which though perhaps the 
father's pre-eminency might, in the firfr. in- 
fiitution of fome common-wealths, give a 
rife to, and place in the beginning, the power 
in one hand; yet it is plain that the reafon, 
that continued the form of government in a 
Jingle per/on, was not any regard, or refpect 
to paternal authority ; fince all petty mo- 
narchies, that is, almoit. all monarchies, near 
their original, have been commonly, at lead: 
upon occafion, elective. 

§. 107. Firft. then, in the beginning of 
things, the father's government of the child- 
hood of thofe fprung from him, having ac- 
cuftemed them to the rule of one man, and 



Of Civil-Government. 289 

taught them that where it was exercifed with 
care and fkill, with affection and love to thofe 
under it, it was fufficient to procure and 
preferve to men all the political happinefs 
they fought for in fociety. It was no wonder 
that they mould pitch upon, and naturally 
run into that form of government, which from 
their infancy they had been all accuftomed 
to ; and which, by experience, they had 
found both eafy and fafe. To which, if we 
add, that monarchy being fimple, and mod 
obvious to men, whom neither experience 
had inftructed in forms of government, nor 
the ambition or infolence of empire had 
taught to beware of the encroachments of 
prerogative, or the inconveniencies of ab- 
felute power, which monarchy in fuccefiion 
was apt to lay claim to, and bring upon 
them j it was not at all ftrange, that they mould 
not much trouble themfelves to think of 
methods of retraining any exorbitances of 
thofe to whom they had given the authority 
over them, and of balancing the power of 
government, by placing feveral parts of it in 
different hands. They had neither felt the 
oppreffion of tyrannical dominion, nor did 
the faihion of the age, nor their poffeffions, 
or way of living, (which afforded little matter 
for covetoufnefs or ambition) give them any 
reafon to apprehend or provide againft it ; 
and therefore it is no wonder they put them- 
felves into fuch a frame of government t as was 

U not 

290 Of Civil-Government. 

not only, as I faid, moft obvious and fimple r 
but alfo bed fuited to their prefent ftate and 
condition; which flood more in need of de- 
fence againft foreign invafions and injuries* 
than of multiplicity of laws. The equality 
of a fimple poor way of living, confining their 
defires within the narrow bounds of each 
man's fmall property, made few controverfies, 
and fo no need of many laws to decide them, 
or variety of officers to fuperintend the pro- 
cefs, or look after the execution of juftice, 
where there were but few trefpaffes, and few 
offenders. Since then thofe, who liked one 
another fo well as to join into fociety, cannot 
but be Juppofed to have feme acquaintance 
and friendfhip together, and fome truft one 
in another -, they could not but have greater 
apprehenfions of others, than of one another: 
and therefore their firft. care and thought can- 
not but be fuppofed to be, how to fecure 
themfelves againit foreign force. It was na- 
tural for them to put themfelves under a 
frame of government which might beil ferve 
to that end, and chuie the wiiefl and braved 
man to condud them in their wars, and lead 
them out againit their enemies, and in this 
chiefly be their ruler. 

§. 108. Thus we fee, that the kings of the 
Indians in America, which is ftill a pattern 
of the firft ages in Ajia and Europe, whilft 
the inhabitants were too few for the country, 
and want of people and money gave men no 


Of Civil-Government. 291 

temptation to enlarge their poffeffions of land, 
or conteft for wider extent of ground, are 
little more than generals of their armies -, and 
though they command abfolutely in war, yet 
at home and in time of peace they exercife 
very little dominion, and have but a very 
moderate fovereignty, the refolutions of peace 
and war being ordinarily either in the people, 
or in a council. Tho' the war itfelf, which 
admits not of plurality of governors, naturally 
devolves the command into the kings file 

§. 109. And thus in Ifirael itfelf, the chief 
hujinefs of their judges, and fir Jl kings, feems to 
have been to be captains in war, and leaders 
of their armies -, which (befides what is 
lignified by going out and in before the people, 
which was, to march forth to war, and home 
again in the heads of their forces) appears 
plainly in the dory of Jephtha. The Ammonites 
making war upon Ifrael, the Gileadites in fear 
fend to 'Jephtha, a baftard of their family 
whom they had caft oft, and article with him, 
if he will affift them againft the Ammonites, 
to make him their ruler ; which they do in 
thefe words, And the people made him head 
and captain over them, Judg. xi. 1 1. which 
was, as it feems, all one as to be judge. And 
he judged Ij'rael, Judg. xii. 7. that is, was 
their captain- general Jix years. So when Jo- 
n upbraids the Shecbemites with the obli- 
gation they had to Gideon, who had been 

U 2 their 

292 Of Ci vil-Go ver nm ent. 

their judge and ruler, he tells them, He 
fought for you, and adventured his life jar, and 
delivered you out of the hands of Midi an, Judg. 
ix. 17. Nothing mentioned of him, but 
what he did as a general: and indeed that 
is all is found in his hiflory, or in any of the 
reft of the judges. And Abimelech parti- 
cularly is called king, though at moft he was 
but their general. And when, being weary 
of the ill conduct of Samuel's fons, the chil- 
dren of Ifrael defired a king, like all the 
nations to judge them, and to go out before 
them, and to fight their battles, 1 Sam. viii. 
20. God granting their deiire, fays to Sa- 
muel, I will fend thee a ?nan, and thou jhalt 
anoint him to be captain ever my people Ifrael, 
that he in ay Jave my people out of' the hands 
of the Phiiifiines, ix. 16. As if the only 
bufmefs of a king had been to lead out their 
armies, and fight in their defence ; and ac- 
cordingly at his inauguration pouring a vial 
of oil upon him, declares to Saul, that the 
Lord had anointed him to be captain over 
his inheritance, x. 1. And therefore thofe, 
who after Saul's being folemnly chofen and 
ialuted king by the tribes at Mi/pah, were 
unwilling to have him their king, made no 
other objection but this, Hoiv jliall this man 
five ns? v. 27. as if they mould have faid, 
this man is unfit to be our king, not having 
fkill and conduct' enough in war, to be able 
to defend us. And when God refolved to 


Of Civil-Government. 293 

transfer the government to David, it is in 
thefe words, But now thy kingdom fiall not 
continue : the Lord hath fought him a man 
after his own heart, and the Lord hath com~ 
manded him to be captain over his people, xiii. 
14. As if the whole kingly authority were 
nothing elfe but to be their general: and 
therefore the tribes who had ftuck to Saul's 
family, and oppofed David's reign, when they 
came to Hebron with terms of fubmiflion to 
him, they tell him, amongft other arguments 
they had to fubmit to him as to their king, 
that he was in effect their king in Saul's time, 
and therefore they had no reafon but to re- 
ceive him as their king now. Alfo (fay they) 
in time pafi, when Saul was king over us, thou 
waft he that leddefl out and broughtefl in Ifrael, 
and the Lord f aid unto thee, Thou Jljalt feed my 
people Ifrael, and thou Jhalt be a captain over 

§. no. Thus, whether a family by degrees 
grew up into a common-wealth, and the fatherly 
authority being continued on to the elder fon, 
every one in his turn growing up under it, 
tacitly fubmitted to it, and the eafinefs and 
equality of it not offending any one, every one 
acquiefced, till time feemed to have con- 
firmed it, and fettled a right of fucceffion by 
prefcription : or whether feveral families, or 
the defendants of feveral families, whom 
chance, neighbourhood, or bufinefs brought 
together, uniting into focietyj the need of a 
U 3 general,, 

294 O p Civil-Government. 

general, whofe conduct might defend them 
againft their enemies in war, and the great 
confidence the innocence and fincerity of that 
poor but virtuous age, (fuch as are almofi: all 
thofe which begin governments, that ever 
come to laft in the world) gave men one of 
another, made the firfl beginners of common- 
wealths generally put the rule into one man's 
hand, without any other exprefs limitation or 
reftraint, but what the nature of the thing, 
and the end of government required : which 
ever of thofe it was that at firft put the rule 
into the hands of a fingle perfon, certain it 
is no body was intruded with it but for the 
public good and fafety, and to thofe ends, in 
the infancies of common-wealths, thofe who 
had it commonly ufed it. And unlefs they 
had done fo, young focieties could not have 
fubfifted; without fuch nurfing fathers tender 
and careful of the public weal, all govern- 
ments would have funk under the weaknefs 
and infirmities of their infancy, and the prince 
and the people had foon periihed together. 

§. in. But though the golden age (before 
vain ambition, and amor feeler atus babendi, 
evil concupifcence,had corrupted men's minds 
into a miilake of true power and honour) 
had more virtue, and confequently better 
governors, as well as lefs vicious fubjects ; 
and there was then no flretching prerogative 
on the one fide, to opprefs the people ; nor 
confequently on the other, any difpute about 


Of Civil- Government. 295 
privilege t toleflen or reftrain the power of the 
magiftrate, and fo no conteft betwixt rulers 
and people about governors or government : 
yet, when ambition and luxury in future 
ages * would retain and increafe the power, 
without doing the bufinefs for which it was 
given ; and aided by flattery, taught princes 
to have diftincl: and feparate interefts from 
their people, men found it neceffary to exa-p 
mine more carefully the original and rights 
cf government ; and to find out ways to re- 
train the exorbitances, and prevent the abufes 
of that power, which they having intruded 
in another's hands only for their own good, 
they found was made ufe of to hurt them. 

§. 112. Thus we may fee how probable it 
is, that people that were naturally free, and 
by their own confent either fubmitted to the 
government of their father, or united together 
out of different families to make a govern- 
ment, mould generally put the rule into one 
m-aris hands, and chufe to be under the con- 
U 4 duel: 

* At firft, when fome certain kind of regiment was once 
approved, it may be nothing was then farther thought upon 
for the manner of governing, but all permitted unto their 
wifdom and difcretion which were to rule, till by experience 
they found this for all parts very inconvenient, fo as the 
thing which they had devifed for a remedy, did indeed but 
increafe the fore which it fhould have cured. They faw, 
that to live by one man's will, became the caufe of ail men's 
mifery. This conftrained them to come unto laws wherein 
all men might fee their duty before hand, and know the 
penalties of tranfgreiling th§m. Hookers Sec), Pol. L i. 
J tit. 10. 

296 Of Civil-Government. 

duct of a fingle per/on, without fo much as 
by exprefs conditions limiting or regulating 
his power, which they thought fafe enough 
in his honefty and prudence ; though they 
never dreamed of monarchy being Jure Di- 
vino, which we never heard of among man- 
kind, till it vsras revealed to us by the divinity 
of this laft age ; nor ever allowed paternal 
power to have a right to dominion, or to be 
^*£$he foundation of all government. And thus 
-rf^^SJiuch may fuffice to fhew, that as far as we 
k ,have any light from hiftory, we have reafon 
to conclude, that all peaceful beginnings of 
'x^Jt^'QQvernmfnt^ fere been laid in the confent of the 
"' peopled 1 fay peaceful, becaufe I mail have 
occafion in another place to fpeak of con- 
: / . queft, which fome efteem a way of beginning 
of governments. 

'The other objection I find urged againfi the 
■ 'beginning of polities, in the way I have men- 
. iioned, is this, viz. 
J^i >, §. 113. That all men being born under go- 
'ry eminent, fome or other , it is impojjible any of 
^ '*•***! them fhould ever be free, and at liberty to unite 
'i£* t** ^°S e ^ Jer > an d begin a new one, or ever be able 
to ereel a lawful government. 

If this argument be good; I afk, how 
came fo many lawful monarchies into the 
world ? for if any body, upon this fuppo- 
fition, can fhew me any one man in any age 
of the worldyr^ to begin a lawful monarchy, 
I will be bound to fhew him ten other free 


Of Civil-Government. 297 

men at liberty, at the fame time to unite and 
begin a new government under a regal, or 
any other form ; it being demonflration, that 
if any one, born under the dominion of ano- 
ther, may be fo free as to have a right to 
command others in a new .and diflincl: em- 
pire, every one that is born under the dominion 
of another may be fo free too, and may be- 
come a ruler, or fubjecl:, of a diflincl feparate 
government. And fo by this their own prin- 
ciple, either all men, however born, are free, 
or elfe there is but one lawful prince, one 
lawful government in the world. And then 
they have nothing to do, but barely to fhew 
us which that is -, which when they have 
done, I doubt not but all mankind will eafily 
agree to pay obedience to him. 

§. 114. Though it be a fufficient anfwer 
to their objection, to fhew that it involves 
them in the fame difficulties that it doth 
thofe they ufe it againft ; yet I mall endea- 
vour to difcover the weaknefs of this argu- 
ment a little farther. 

All men, fay they, are born under govern- 
ment, and therefore they cannot be at liberty to 
begin a new one. Every one is bor?i a fubjed't 
to his father, or his prijtce, and is therefore 
under the perpetual tie of fubjeclion and alle- 
giance. It is plain mankind never owned nor 
confidered any fuch natural fubjeBion that they 
were born in, to one or to the other that tied 


298 Or Civil-Government. 

them, without their own confents, to a fub-» 
jeclion to them and their heirs. 

§. 115. For there are no examples fo fre- 
quent in hiftory, both facred and profane, 
as thofe of men withdrawing themfelves, and 
their obedience, from the jurifdiction they 
were born under, and the family or com- 
munity they were bred up in, and Jetting up 
new governments in other places; from whence 
fprang all that number of petty common- 
wealths in the beginning of ages, and which 
always multiplied, as long as there was room 
enough, till the flronger, or more fortunate, 
fwallowed the weaker ; and thofe great ones 
again breaking to pieces, dilTolved into lefTer 
dominions. All which are fo many tefti- 
monies againfl paternal fovereignty, and 
plainly prove, that it was not the natural 
right of the father defcending to his heirs, 
that made governments in the beginning, 
fince it was impoffible, upon that ground, 
there mould have been fo many little king- 
doms ; all muil: have been but only one uni- 
verfal monarchy, if men had not been at 
liberty to feparate themfelves from their fa- 
milies, and the government, be it what it 
will, that was fet up in it, and go and make 
diftinct common-wealths and other govern- 
ments, as they thought fit. 

§. 116. This has been the practice of the 
world from its firft beginning to this day; 
nor is it now any more hindrance to the 


Of Civil-Government. 299 

reedom of mankind, that they are born under 
onjiituted and ancient polities, that have efta- 
>li(hed laws, and fet forms of government, 

Ihan if they were born in the woods, amongft 
he unconfined inhabitants, that run loofe in 
hem : for thofe, who would perfuade us, 
hat by being born under any government, we 
ire naturally fubjecls to it, and have no more 
my title or pretence to the freedom of the 
[late of nature, have no other reafon (bating 
that of paternal power, which we have al- 
ready anfwered) to produce for it, but only, 
becaufe our fathers or progenitors paffed away 
their natural liberty, and thereby bound up 
themfelves and their pofterity to a perpetual 
fubjection to the government, which they 
themfelves fubmitted to. It is true, that 
whatever engagements or promifes any one 
has made for himfelf, he is under the obli- 
gation of them, but cannot, by any compact 
whatfoever, bind bis children or pqfteritv : for 
his fon, when a man, being altogether as 
free as the father, any a5i of the father can 
no more give away the liberty of the fon, than 
it can of any body elfe : he may indeed annex 
fuch conditions to the land, he enjoyed as a 
fubjecl: of any common-wealth, as may oblige 
his fon to be of that community, if he will 
enjoy thofe pofTerlions which were his fa- 
ther's ; becaufe that eftate being his father's 
property, he may difpofe, or fettle it, as he 

§• »7- 

•^oo Of Civil-Government. 

§. 117. And this has generally given the 
occafion to miftake in this matter ; becaufe 
common-wealths not permitting any part of 
their dominions to be difmembered, nor to 
be enjoyed by any but thofe of their com- 
munity, the fon cannot ordinarily enjoy the 
poffeflions of his father, but under the fame 
terms his father did, by becoming a member 
of the fociety ; whereby he puts himfelf 
prefently under the government he finds there 
ellablifhed, as much as any other fubject of 
that common-wealth. And thus the confent 
of freemen, born under government, which only 
makes them members of it, being given feparately 
in their turns, as each comes to be of age, 
and not in a multitude together ; people take 
no notice of it, and thinking it not done at 
all, or not neceiTary, conclude they are na- 
turally fubjects as they are men. 

§. 118. But, it is plain, governments them- 
felves underftand it otherwife ; they claim 
no power over the J on, becaufe of that they had 
over the father ; nor look on children as being, 
their fubjects, by their fathers being fo. If 
a fubjeel: of England have a child, by an Englifl} 
woman in France, whofe fubject is he ? Not 
the king of England'?; for he muft have 
leave to be admitted to the privileges of it : 
nor the king of France's ; for how then has 
his father a liberty to bring him away, and 
breed him as he pleafes ? and who ever was 
judged as a traytor or defcrter, if he left, or 


Of Civil-Government. 301 

;varred againft a country, for being barely 
23orn in it of parents that were aliens there ? 
ft is plain then, by the practice of govern- 
ments themfelves, as well as by the law of 
right reafon, that a child is born a fubjedl of 
w country or government. He is under his 
father's tuition and authority, till he comes 
to age of difcretion ; and then he is a free- 
man, at liberty what government he will put 
himfelf under, what body politic he will 
unite himfelf to : for if an Englijhmans fon, 
born in France, be at liberty, and may do 
fo, it is evident there is no tie upon him by 
his father's being a fubjecl: of this kingdom ; 
nor is he bound up by any compact of his an- 
cestors. And why then hath not his fon, by 
the fame reafon, the fame liberty, though he 
be born any where elfe ? Since the power 
that a father hath naturally over his children, 
is the fame, where-ever they be born, and 
the ties of natural obligations, are not bounded 
by the pofitive limits of kingdoms and com- 

§. 119. Every man being, as has been 
(hewed, naturally free, and nothing being 
able to put him into fubjection to any earthly 
power, but only his own confent ; it is to be 
confidered, what fhall be underliood to be a 
fufficient declaration of a man's confent, to make 
him fubjecl to the laws of any government. 
There is a common diftinction of an exprefs 
and a tacit ccmfent, which will concern our 


302 Of Civil-Government. 
prefent cafe. No body doubts but an exprefs 
confenty of any man entering into any fo- 
ciety, makes him a perfect member of that 
fociety, a fubject of that government. The 
difficulty is, what ought to be looked upon 
as a tacit confent, and how far it binds, i. c. 
how far any one mall be looked on to have 
con fen ted, and thereby fubmitted to any go- 
vernment, where he has made no exprerlions 
of it at all. And to this I fay, that every 
man, that hath any polTeffions, or enjoyment, 
of any part of the dominions of any govern- 
ment, doth thereby give his tacit confent, and 
is as far forth obliged to obedience to the 
laws of that government, during fuch enjoy- 
ment, as any one under it ; whether this his 
poileilion be of land, to him and his heirs 
for ever, or a lodging only for a week ; or 
whether it be barely travelling freely on the 
highway; and in effect, it reaches as far as 
the very being of any one within the terri- 
tories of that government. 

§. 120. To underfland this the better, it is 
fit to confider, that every man, when he at 
firft incorporates himfelf into any common- 
wealth, he, by his uniting himfelf thereunto, 
annexed alio, and fubmits to the community, 
thofe polTeffions, which he has, or fhall ac- 
quire, that do not already belong to any 
other government : for it would be a direct 
contradiction, for any one to enter into fo- 
ciety with others for the fecuring and re- 

Of Civil-Government. 303 

gulating of property ; and yet to fuppofe his 
land, whofe property is to be regulated by 
the laws of the fociety, mould be exempt 
from the jurifdiction of that government, to 
which he himfelf, the proprietor of the land, 
is a fubject. By the fame act therefore, 
whereby any one unites his perfoa, which 
was before free, to any common-wealth ; by 
the fame he unites his poffeflions, which were 
before free, to it alfo ; and they become, 
both of them, perfon and pofTeffion, fubject 
to the government and dominion of that 
common-wealth, as long as it hath a being. 
Whoever therefore, from thenceforth, by 
inheritance, purchafe, permiffion, or other- 
ways, enjoys any part of the land, fo annexed 
to, and under the government of that com- 
mon-wealth, muji take it with the condition it 
is under ; that is, of fubmitting to the govern- 
ment of the common-wealth, under whole juris- 
diction it is, as far forth as any fubjecl of it. 
§. 121. But fince the government has a 
direct jurifdiction only over the laud, and 
reaches the pofTerTor of it, (before he has 
actually incorporated himfelf in the focietv) 
only as he dwells upon, and enjoys that ; the 
obligation any one is under, by virtue of fuch 
enjoyment, to fubmit to the government, begins 
and ends with the enjoyment ; lb that whenever 
the owner, who has given nothing but fuch 
a tacit confent to the government, will, by 
3 donation, 

304 Of Civil-Government. 

donation, ialc, or otherwise, quit the faidt 
poiTefiion, lie is at liberty to go and incor- 
porate himfelf into any other common- 
wealth; or to agree with others to begin a 
new one, in vacuis locis, in any part of the 
world, they can find free and unpofTefTed : 
whereas he, that has once, by actual agree- 
ment, and any exprefs declaration, given his 
confent to be of any common-wealth, is per- 
petually and indifpentibly obliged to be, and 
remain unalterably a fubject to it, and can 
never be again in the liberty of the ftate of 
nature ; unlefs, by any calamity, the govern- 
ment he was under comes to be difTolved ; 
or elfe by fome public act cuts him off from, 
being any longer a member of it. 

§. 122. But fubmitting to the laws of any 
country, living quietly, and enjoying privi- 
leges and protection under them, makes not 
a man a member of that fociety : this is only 
a local protection and homage due to and 
from all thofe, who, not being in a flate of 
war, come within the territories belonging 
to any government, to all parts whereof the 
force of its laws extends. But this no more 
makes a man a member of that fociety > a per- 
petual fubject of that common-wealth, than 
it -would make a man a fubject to another, in 
whofe family he found it convenient to abide 
for fome time; though, whilft he continued 
in it, he were obliged to comply with the 
laws, and fubmit to the government he 


Of Civil-Government. 305 
found there. And thus we fee, that fo- 
reigners, by living all their lives under another 
government, and enjoying the privileges and 
protection of it, though they are bound, even 
in confcience, to fubmit to its admmiltration, 
as far forth as any denifon ; yet do not thereby 
come to be fubjcBs or members of that com- 
mon-wealth. Nothing can make any man fo, 
but his actually entering into it by pofitive 
enlevement, and exprefs promife and compact. 
This is that, which I think, concerning the 
beginning of political focietjes, and that con- 
fent -which makes any one a member of any 
common- wealth. 


Of the Ends of Political Society and Govern- 


% 127. J F man in the ftate of nature be 
X fo free, as has been laid ; if he 
be abfolute lord of his own perfori and pof- 
leffions, equal to the greatcft, and fubjed to 
no body, why will he part with his ircedom ? 
why will he give up this empire, and iubject 
Limfelf to the dominion and controul oi any 
other power ? To which it is obvious to an- 
fwer, that though in the ftate of nature he 
hath fucha right, yet the enjoyment of it 
is very uncertain, and conftantly exposed to 
the invafion of others : for all being kings as 

X much. 

oo6 Of Civil-Government. 

much as he, every man his equal, and the 
greater part no ftricl: obfervers of equity and 
juftice, the enjoyment of the property he has 
in this ftate is very unfafe, very unfecure. 
This makes him willing to quit a con- 
dition, which, however free, is full of fears 
and continual dangers : and it is not without 
reafon, that he feeks out, and is willing to 
join in fociety with others, who are already 
united, or have a mind to unite, for the mutual 
preservation of their lives, liberties and eftates, 
which I call by the general name, property. 

§. 124. The great and chief end, therefore* 
of men's uniting into common-wealths, and 
putting themfelves under government, is the 
■prefervation of their property. To which in 
the ftate of nature there are many things 

Firji, There wants an eftablified, fettled, 
known law, received and allowed by commoi 
eonfent to be the ftandard of right and wron^ 
and the common meafure to decide all con- 
troverts between them : for though the la^ 
of nature be plain and intelligible to all ra- 
tional creatures ; yet men being biafTed by. 
their intereft, as well as ignorant for want of 
ftudy of it, are not apt to allow of it as a 
law binding to them in the application of it 
to their particular cafes. 

§. 125. Secondly, In the ftate of nature 

--there wants a known and indifferent judge, with 

authority to determine all differences ac- 

^ cording 

Of Civil-Government. 307 

cording to the eftablifhed law : for every one 
in that ftate being both judge and executioner 
of the law of nature, men being partial to 
themfelves, paftion and revenge is very apt 
to carry them too far, and with too much 
heat, in their own cafes ; as well as negli- 
gence, and unconcernednefs, to make them 
too remifs in other men's. 

§. 126. thirdly) In the ftate of nature there 
often wants power to back and fupport the 
fentence when right, and to give it due exe~ 
cution. They who by any injuftice offended, 
will feldom fail, where they are able, by force 
to make good their injuftice ; fuch reiiftance 
many times makes the punifhment dangerous, 
and frequently deftructive, to thofe who at- 
tempt it. 

§. 127. Thus mankind, notwithftanding 
all the privileges of the ftate of nature, being 
but in an ill condition, while they remain, 
in it, are quickly driven into fociety. Hence 
it comes to pals, that we feldom find any 
number of men live any time together in this 
ftate. The inconveniencics that they are 
therein expofed to, by the irregular and un- 
certain exercife of the power every man has 
of punifhing the tranfgreffions of others, 
make them take fanctuary under the efta- 
blifhed laws of government, and therein 
feek the prefervatio?i of their property. It is 
this makes them fo willingly give up every 
one his fingle power of punifhing, to be 
X 2 cxercifed 

308 Of Civil-Government* 

exercifed by fuch alone, as fhall be ap- 
pointed to it amongft them ; and by fuch 
rules as the community, or thofe authorized 
by them to that purpofe, mail agree on. And 
in this we have the original right and rife of 
both the legijlative and executive power, as well 
as of the governments and focieties them- 

§. 128. For in the ftate of nature, to omit 
the liberty he has of innocent delights, a man 
has two powers. 

The firft is to do whatfoever he thinks fit 
for the prefervation of himfelf, and others 
within the permiffion of the law of nature : 
by which law, common to them all, he and 
all the reft of mankind are one community, 
make up one fociety, diftinct from all other 
creatures. And were it not for the corrup- 
tion and vitioufnefs of degenerate men, there 
would be no need of any other ; no neceffity 
that men mould feparate from this great and 
natural community, and by pontive agree- 
ments combine into fmailer and divided 

The other power a man has in the. ftate 
of nature, is the power to puni/Ij the crimes 
committed againft that law. Both thefe he 
gives up, when he joins in a private, if I may 
fo call it, or particular politic fociety, and in- 
corporates into any common-wealth, feparate 
from the reft of mankind. 

§. 129. 

Of Civil-Government. 309 

§. 129. The firft power, viz. of doing what- 
foever he thought for the prefervation of him- 
felf and the reft of mankind, he gives up to 
be regulated by laws made by the fociety, 
fo far forth as the prefervation of himfelf, 
and the reft of that fociety (hall require; 
which laws of the fociety in many things 
confine the liberty he had by the law of 

§. I30. Secondly ', The power of punifiing he 
wholly gives up, and engages his natural force, 
(which he might before employ in the exe- 
cution of the law of nature, by his own fingle 
authority, as he thought fit) to affift the 
executive power of the fociety, as the law 
thereof mail require : for being now in a new 
ftate, wherein he is to enjoy many conve- 
niences, from the labour, affiftance, and fo- 
ciety of others in the fame community, as 
well as protection from its whole ftrength ; 
he is to part alfo with as much of his natural 
liberty, in providing for himfelf, as the good, 
profperity, and fafety of the fociety mall re- 
quire; which is not only neceflary, but juft, 
fince the other members of the fociety do 
the like. 

§. 131. But though men, when they enter 
into fociety, give up the equality, liberty, 
and executive power they had in the ftate of 
nature, into the hands of the fociety, to be 
fo far difpofed of by the legiflative, as the 
good of the fociety mall require ; yet it being 
X 3 only 

2 1 o Of Civil-Government. 

only with an intention in every one the better 
to preferve himfelf, his liberty and property ; 
(for no rational creature can be fuppofed to 
change his condition with an intention to be 
worfe) the power of the fociety, or legi/lative 
constituted by them, can never be fuppofed to 
extend farther, than the common good-, but is 
obliged to fecure every one's property, by 
providing againft thofe three defects above 
mentioned, that made the flate of nature fo 
unfafe and uneafy. And fo whoever has the 
legiilative or iupreme power of any common- 
wealth, is bound to govern by eftablifhed 
jlanding laws, promulgated and known to the 
people, and not by extemporary decrees; by 
indijfere?it and upright judges, who are to 
decide controversies by thofe laws , and to 
employ the force of the community at home, 
only in the execution of fuch laws, or abroad 
to prevent or redrefs foreign injuries, and 
fecure the community from inroads and in- 
vaiion. And all this to be directed to no 
other end, but the peace, ffety, and public 
good of the people. 


Of the Forms of a Common-wealth. 

§. 132. *Tp HE majority having, as has been 
X /hewed, upon men's nrfi: uniting 
into fociety, the whole power of the com- 

Of Civil-Government. 311 

munity naturally in them, may employ all 
that power in making laws for the commu- 
nity from time to time, and executing thofe 
laws by officers of their own appointing ; 
and then the form of the government is a 
perfect democracy : or elfe may put the power 
of making laws into the hands of a few felect 
men, and their heirs or fuccefTors ; and then 
it is an oligarchy: or elfe into the hands of 
one man, and then it is a monarchy : if to 
him and his heirs, it is an hereditary mo- 
narchy : if to him only for life, but upon 
his death the power only of nominating a 
fucceflbr to return to them ; an elective mo- 
narchy. And fo accordingly of thefe the 
community may make compounded and 
mixed forms of government as they think 
good. And if the legiflative power be at 
rirft given by the majority to one or more 
perfons only for their lives, or any limited 
time, and then the fupreme power to revert 
to them again ; when it is fo reverted, the 
community may difpofe of it again anew 
into what hands they pleafe, and fo conftitute 
a new form of government : for the form of 
government depending upon the placing the fu- 
preme power, which is the legiflative, it being 
impoffible to conceive that an inferior power 
fhould prefcribe to a fuperior, or any but the 
fupreme make laws, according as the power 
of making laws is placed, fuch is the form 
of the common-wealth. 

X 4 §• 133- 

312 OF ClV'IL-GovERNMF.N'T. 

§.133. "By- common-wealth, I mud be un- 
derftood all along to mean, not a democracy, 
or any form of government, but any inde- 
pendent community, which the hatines lignilied 
by the word ci-vitas, to which the word 
which bed anfwers in our language, is com- 
mon-wealth, and mod: properly cxprefies fuch 
a fociety of men, which community or city 
in E?2glijh does not ; for there may be fub- 
ordinate communities in a government ; and 
city amongft us has a quite different notion 
from common-wealth : and therefore, to avoid 
ambiguity, I crave leave to ufe the word 
common-wealth in that fenfe, in w T hich I find 
it ufed by king "James the firji ; and I take 
it to be its genuine fignincation ; which if 
any body dillike, I content with him to 
change it for a better. 


Of the "Extent of the Legijlative Power, 

§. 1 34. r ~W~~ s H E great end of men's entering 
j| into fociety, being the enjoy- 
ment of their properties in peace and fafety, 
and the great inftrument and means of that 
being the laws eitablimed in that fociety ; the 
firfi and fundamental pojitrue law of all com- 
mon- wealths is the ejiablifing of the legijlative 
power ; as the firfl and fundamental natural 


Of Civil-Government. 313 

law, which is to govern even the legiflative 
itielf, is the prefervation of the fociety, and 
(as far as will confiit with the public good) 
of every perfon in it. This legiflative is not 
only / be fupr em e power of the common-wealth, 
but facred and unalterable in the hands where 
the community hive once placed it; nor can 
any edict of any body e\(e. in what form foever 
conceived, or by what power foever backed, 
have the force and obligation of a law, which 
has not its fanblion from that legiflative which 
the public has chofen and appointed : for 
without this the law could not have that, 
which is abfolutelv neceffary to its being a 
law, * the confent of the fociety, over whom 
no body can have a power to make laws, but 
by their own confent, and by authority re- 

* The lawful power of making laws to command whole 
politic focieties of men, belonging fo properly unto the fame 
intire focieties, that for any prinee or potentate of what kind 
foever upon earth, to exercife the fame of himfelf, and not 
by exprefs commiffion immediately and perfonally received 
from God, or elfe by authority derived at the firft from their 
confent, upon whofe perfons they i:ipofe laws, it is no better 
than mere tyranny. Laws they are not therefore which public 
approbation hath not made fo. Hooker 's Eccl. Pol. 1. i. feSi. 
10. Of this point therefore we are to note, that fith men 
naturally have no full and perfect power to command whole 
politic multitudes of men, therefore utterly without our cor,- 
fent, we could in fuch fort be at no man's commandment 
living. And to be commanded we do confent, when that 
fociety, whereof we be a part, hath at any time before con- 
fented, without revoking the fame after by the like univerfal 

Laws therefore human, of what kind fo ever, are available 
by confent. Ibid. 

314 Of Civil-Government. 

ceived from them ; and therefore all the 
obedience, which by the moil folemn ties any 
one can be obliged to pay, ultimately termi- 
nates in this fupreme power, and is directed 
by thofe laws which it enacts : nor can any 
oaths to any foreign power whatfoever, or 
any domeftic fubordinate power, difcharge 
any member of the fociety from his obedience 
to the kgijlative, acting purfuant to their truft j 
nor oblige him to any obedience contrary to 
the laws fo enacted, or farther than they do 
allow ; it being ridiculous to imagine one 
can be tied ultimately to obey any power in 
the fociety, which is not the fupreme. 

§. 135. Though the kgifiathe, whether 
placed in one or more, whether it be always 
in being, or only by intervals, though it be 
the fupreme power in every common-wealth; 

F;rf}, It is not, nor can poflibly be abfo- 
lutely arbitrary over the iives and fortunes of 
the people : for it being but the joint power 
of every member of the fociety given up to 
that perfon, or aiTembly, which is legiilator ; 
it can be no more than thofe perfons had in 
a Hate of nature before they entered into fo- 
ciety, and gave up to the community : , for 
no body can transfer to another more power 
than he has in hlmfelf j and no body has an 
abfolute arbitrary power over himfelf, or over 
any other, to deftroy his own life, or take 
away the life or property of another. A man, 


Of Civil-Government. 315 

as has been proved, cannot fubjec~t himfelf 
to the arbitrary power of another; and having 
in the flate of nature no arbitrary power over 
the life, liberty, or porlefTion of another, but 
only fo much as the law of nature gave him 
for the prefervation of himfelf, and the reft 
of mankind ; this is all he doth, or can 
give up to the common-wealth, and by it 
to the legijlative flower, fo that the legillative 
can have no more than this. Their power, 
in the utmoft bounds of it, is limited to the 
public good of the fociety. It is a power, 
that hath no other end but prefervation, and 
therefore can never * have a right to deftro^, 
enflave, or designedly to impoverifh the fub- 
jecls. The obligations of the law of nature 
ceafe not in fociety, but only in many cafes 
are drawn clofer, and have by human laws 


* Two foundations there are which bear up public fo- 
cieties ; the one a natural inclination, whereby all men defire 
fociahle life and fellowship ; the other an order, exprefly or 
fecretly agreed upon, touching the manner of their union 
in living together : the latter is that which we call the law 
of a common-weal, the very foul of a politic body, the 
parts whereof are by law animated, held together, and fet 
on work in fuch actions as the common good requireth. 
Laws politic, ordained for external order and regiment 
amengft men, are never framed as they mould be, unlefs 
prefuming the will of man to be inwardly obftinate, rebellious, 
and averfe from sll obedience to the facred laws of his 
nature ; in a word, unlefs prefuming man to be, in regard 
of his depraved mind, little better than a wild beaft, they 
do accordingly provide, notwithstanding, fo to frame his out- 
ward actions, that they be no hindrance unto the common 
good, for which focieties are inftituted. Unlefs they do this, 
they are not perfect. Hookers Eccl. PcL I, i. fefl. 10. 

3 1 6 Of Civil- Government. 

known penalties annexed to them, to inforce 
their obiervation. Thus the law of nature 
/lands as an eternal rule to all men, legif- 
lators as v/ell as others. The rules that they 
make for other men's actions, muft, as well 
as their own and other men's actions, be 
conformable to the law of nature, i. e. to 
the will of God, of which that is a decla- 
ration, and the fundamental law of nature being 
the prefer-vation of mankind, no human fanclion 
can be good, or valid againft it. 

§. 136. Secondly i * The legijlative, or fu- 
preme authority, cannot aiTume to its felf a 
power to rule by extemporary arbitrary de- 
crees, but is bound to difpenfe jujlice, and decide 
the rights of the fubject by promulgated Jlanding 
laws , and known authorized judges : for the 
law of nature being unwritten, and fo no 
where to be found but in the minds of men, 
they who through paffion or intereft mail 
mifcite, cr mifapply it, cannot fo eafily be 
convinced of their miftake where there is no 
eftablimed judge: and fo it ferves not, as it 
ought, to determine the rights, and fence the 


* Human laws are meafures in refpeft of men whofe actions 
they muft direct, howbeit iuch meafures they are as have alfo 
their higher rules to be meafured by. which rules are two, 
the law of God, and the law of nature ; fo that laws human 
muft be made according to the general laws of nature, and 
without contradiction to any pofitive law of {"capture, other- 
wife they are ill made. Hacker's Eccl. Pol. I. iii. feSi. 9. 

To conftrain men to any thing inconvenient doth feera 
unreafonable. Ibid. L i. fed. 10. 

Of Civil-Government. 317 
properties of thofe that live under it, efpe- 
cially where every one is judge, interpreter, 
and executioner of it too, and that in his 
own cafe : and he that has right on his fide, 
having ordinarily but his own fingle ftrength, 
hathi not force enough to defend himfelf from 
injuries, or to punifh delinquents. To avoid 
thefe inconveniencies, which diforder men's 
properties in the ftate of nature, men unite 
into focieties, that they may have the united 
ftrength of the whole fociety to fecure and 
defend their properties, and may have Jlanding 
rules to bound it, by which every one may- 
know what is his. To this end it is that 
men give up all their natural power to the 
fociety which they enter into, and the com- 
munity put the legiflative power into fuch 
hands as they think fit, with this truft, that 
they (hall be governed by declared laws, or 
elfe their peace, quiet, and property will 
flill be at the fame uncertainty, as it was in 
the ftate of nature. 

§. 137. Abfolute arbitrary power, or go- 
verning without fettled jlanding laws, can nei- 
ther of them confift with the ends of fociety 
and government, which men would not quit 
the freedom of the ftate of nature for, and 
tie themfelves up under, were it. not to pre- 
ferve their lives, liberties and fortunes, and 
by Jlated rules of right and property to fecure 
their peace and quiet. It cannot be fuppofed 
that they mould intend, had they a power 


3 iB Of Civil-Government. 

fo to do, to give to any one, or more, an 
abfoluiC arbitrary power over their perfons and 
eitates, and put a force into the magistrate's 
hand to execute his unlimited will arbitrarily 
upon them. This were to put themfelves 
into a worfe condition than the ftate of na- 
ture, wherein they had a liberty to defend 
their right againlr. the injuries of others, 
and were upon equal terms offeree to main- 
tain it, whether invaded by a fingle man, 
or many in combination. Whereas by fup- 
pofing they have given up themfelves to the 
abfolute arbitrary power and will of a legif- 
lator, they have difarmed themfelves, and 
armed him, to make a prey of them when 
he pleafes ; he being in a much worfe con- 
dition, who is expofed to the arbitrary power 
of one man, who has the command of 
100,000, than he that is expofed to the arbi- 
trary power of 100,000 fingle men ; no body 
being fecure, that his will, who has fuch a 
command, is better than that of other men, 
though his force be 100,000 times ftronger. 
And therefore, whatever form the common- 
wealth is under, the ruling power ought to 
govern by declared and received laws, and not 
by extemporary dictates and undetermined 
refolutions ; for then mankind will be in a 
far worfe condition than in the ftate of 
nature, if they mall have armed one, or a 
few men with the joint power of a multitude, 
to force them to obey at pleaiure the exor- 
4 bitant 

Of Civil-Government. 319 

- bitant and unlimited decrees of their fudden 
thoughts, or unreftrained, and till that mo- 
ment unknown wills, without having any 
meafures fet down which may guide and 
juftify their actions : for all the power the 
government has, being on-ly for the good of 
the fociety, as it ought not to be arbitrary and 
at pleafure, fo it ought to be exercifed by ejla- 
blijhed and promulgated laws j that both the 
people may know their duty, and be fafe and 
fecure within the limits of the law ; and the 
rulers too kept within their bounds, and not 
be tempted, by the power they have in their 
hands, to employ it to fuch purpofes, and 
by fuch meafures, as they would not have 
known, and own not willingly. 

§. 138. thirdly ', The fupreme power cannot take 
from any man any part of his property without 
his own confent : for the prefervation of pro- 
perty being the end of government, and that 
for which men enter into fociety, it necellarily 
fuppofes and requires, that the people mould 
have property, without which they muft be 
fuppofed to lofe that, by entering into fo- 
ciety, which was the end for which they 
entered into it ; too grofs an abfurdity for 
any man to own. Men therefore in fociety 
having property, they have fuch a right to 
the goods, which by the law of the com- 
munity are their's, that no body hath a right 
to take their fubftance or any part of it from 
them, without their own confent : without 


320 Of Civil-Government. 

this they have no property at all ; for I have 
truly no property in that, which another can 
by right take from me, when he pleafes, 
againit my confent. Hence it is a miftake to 
think, that the fupreme or legi/lative power of 
any common-wealth, can do what it will, 
and difpofe of the eftates of the fubject arbi- 
trarily, or take any part of them at pleafure. 
This is not much to be feared in govern- 
ments where the legi/lative conlifts, wholly or 
in part, in affemblies which are variable, 
whofe members, upon the difTolution of the ^ 
ailembly, are fubjects under the common 
laws of their country, equally with the reft. 
But in governments, where the legi/lative is in 
one lading affembly always in being, or in 
one man, as in abfolute monarchies, there 
is danger ftill, that they will think them- 
felves to have a diftindt intereft from the 
reft of the community; and fo will be apt 
to increafe their own riches and power, by 
taking what they think fit from the people : 
for a man's property is not at all fecure, tho' 
there be good and equitable laws to fet the 
bounds of it between him and his fellow 
fubjects, if he who commands thofe fubjecls 
have power to take from any private man, 
what part he pleafes of his property, and ufe 
and difpofe of it as he thinks good. 

§. 139. But government, into whatfoever 

hands it is put, being, as I have before mewed, 

intruded w^th this condition, and for this 

5 end, 

Of Civil-Government. 321 

md, that men might have and fecure their 
properties; the prince, or fenate, however it 
may have power to make Jaws, for the re- 
gulating or property between the fubjects one 
amongft another, yet can never have a power 
to take to themfelves the whole, or any part 
of the fubjects property, without their own 
confent : for this would be in effect to leave 
them no property at all. And to let us fee, 
that even abfolute power, where it is necefTary, 
is not arbitrary by being abfolute, but is ftill 
limited by that reafon, and confined to thofe 
ends, which required it in fome cafes to be 
abfolute, we need look no farther than the 
common practice of martial difcipline : for 
the prefervation of the army, and in it of* 
the whole common-wealth, requires an ab- 
folute obedience to the command of every fu- 
perior officer, and it is juftly death to difobey 
or difpute the moft, dangerous or unreaibnable 
of them ; but yet we fee, that neither the 
fcrjeant, that could command a foldier to 
march up to the mouth of a cannon, or ftand 
in a breach, where he isalmoft fure to periffi, 
can command that foldier to give him one 
penny of his money ; nor the general, that 
can condemn him to death for deferting his 
port, or for not obeying the moft defperate 
orders, can yet, with all his abfolute power of 
life and death, difpofe of one farthing of that 
foldier's ellate, or feize one jot of his goods ; 
whom yet he can command any thing, and 

Y hang 

322 Of Civil-Government. 
hang for the leaft difobedience ; becaufe fuch 
a blind obedience is neceffary to that end, 
for which the commander has his power, viz. 
the prefervation of the reft ; but the difpofing 
of his goods has nothing to do with it. 

§. 140. It is true, governments cannot be 
fupported without great charge, and it is fit 
every one who enjoys his mare of the pro- 
tection, mould pay out of his eftate his pro- 
portion for the maintenance of it. But ftill 
it muft be with his own confent, i. e. the 
confent of the majority, giving it either by 
themfelves, or their representatives chofen by 
them : for if any one mail claim a power to 
lay and levy taxes on the people, by his own 
authority, and without fuch confent of the 
people, he thereby invades the fundamental 
law of property, and fubverts the end of go- 
vernment : for what property have I in that, 
which another may by right take, when he 
pleafes, to himfelf ? 

§. 141. Fourthly, The legifative cannot 
transfer the power of making laws to any other 
hands : for it being but a delegated power 
from the people, they who have it cannot 
pafs it over to others. The people alone can 
appoint the form of the common-wealth, 
which is by conftituting the legillative, and 
appointing in whofe hands that (hall be. And 
when the people have faid, We will fubmit to 
rules, and be governed by laws made by fuch 
men, and in fuch forms, no body elfe can 


Of Civil-Government. 323 

fay other men mall make laws for them ; nor 
can the people be bound by any laws, but 
fuch as are enacted by thofe whom they have 
chofen, and authorized to make laws for 
them. The power of the legijlative, being 
derived from the people by a pofitive volun- 
tary grant and inftitution, can be no other 
than what that pofitive grant conveyed, which 
being only to make laws, and not to make 
legislators, the legijlative can have no power 
to transfer their authority of making laws, 
and place it in other hands. 

§. 142. Thefe are the bounds which the 
trult, that is put in them by the fociety, and 
the law of God and nature, have Jet to the 
legijlative power of every common-wealth, in. 
all forms of government. 

Firft, They are to govern by promulgated 
ejiabliped laws, not to be varied in particular 
cafes, but to have one rule for rich and 
poor, for the favourite at court, and the 
country man at plough. 

Secondly, Thefe laws alfo ought to be 
defignedy^r no other end ultimately, but the 
good oj the people. 

Thirdly, They mud not raije taxes on the 
property oj the people, without the conjent of the 
people, given by themfelves, or their deputies. 
And this properly concerns only fuch go- 
vernments where the legijlative is always in 
being, or at lead where the people have 
not referved any part of the legiflative to 
Y 2 deputies, 

324 Of Civil-Government. 
deputies, to be from time to time chofen by 

Fourthly, The legijlative neither muit nor 
can transfer the power of making laws to any 
body elfe, or piace it any where, but where 
the people have. 


Of the Legijlative, Executive, and Federative 
Power of the Common- wealth. 

§. 143. ' g 'HE legiflative power is that, 
4 which has a right to direft 
hew the force of the common-wealth mail be 
employed for preferving the community and 
the members of it. But becaufe thofe laws 
which are constantly to be executed, and 
whofe force is always to continue, may be 
made in a little time ; therefore there is no 
need, that the legijlative mould be always in 
being, not having always bufinefs to do. 
And becaufe it may be too great a temptation 
to human frailty, apt to grafp at power, for 
the fame perfons, who have the power of 
making laws, to have alfo in their hands the 
power to execute them, whereby they may 
exempt themfelves from obedience to the 
laws they make, and fuit the law, both in 
its making, and execution, to their own 
private advantage, and thereby come to have 
a diftincl: intereft from the reft of the com- 

Of Civil-Government.' 325 
• munity, contrary to the end of fociety and 
government : therefore in well-ordered com- 
mon-wealths, where the good of the whole 
is lb confidered, as it ought, the legislative 
power is put into the hands of divers perfons, 
who duly affembled, have by themfelves, or 
jointly with others, a power to make laws, 
which when they have done, being feparated 
again, they are themfelves fubject to the laws 
they have made ; which is a new and near tie 
upon them, to take care, that they make 
them for the public good. 

§. 144. But becaufe the laws, that are at 
once, and in a fhort time made, have a con- 
ftant and lafting force, and need a perpetual 
execution, or an attendance thereunto ; there- 
fore it is neceffary there mould be a power 
always in being, which fhould fee to the 
execution of the laws that are made, and. 
remain in force. And thus the legijlative and 
executive power come often to be feparated. 

§. 145. There is another power in every 
common-wealth, which one may call na- 
tural, becaufe it is that which anfwers to the 
power every man naturally had before he 
entered into fociety : for though in a com- 
mon-wealth the members of it are diftin<fb 
perfons Hill in reference to one another, and 
as fuch are governed by the laws of the fo- 
ciety ; yet in reference to the reft of man- 
kind, they make one body, which is, as every 
member of it before was, liill in the ftate of 
Y 3 nature 

326 Of Civil-Government. 

nature with the reft of mankind. Hence it 
is, that the controverfies that happen between 
any man of the fociety with thofe that are 
out of it, are managed by the public ; and 
an injury done to a member of their body, 
engages the whole in the reparation of it. 
So that under this consideration, the whole 
community is one body in theftate of nature, 
in refpect of all other ftates or perfons out of 
its community. 

§. 146. This therefore contains the power 
of war and peace, leagues and alliances, and 
all the tranfactions, with all perfons and com- 
munities without the common-wealth, and 
may be called federative, if any one pleafes. 
So the thing be underftood, I am indifferent 
as to the name. 

§. 147. Thefe two powers, executive and 
federative, though they be really diftinct in 
themfelves, yet one comprehending the exe- 
cution of the municipal laws of the fociety 
within its felf, upon all that are parts of it ; 
the other the management of the fecurity and 
interejl of the public without, with all thofe 
that it may receive benefit or damage from, 
yet they are always almoft united. And 
though this federative power in the well or 
ill management of it be of great moment to 
the common-wealth, yet it is much lefs ca- 
pable to be directed by antecedent, {landing, 
pofitive laws, than the executive ; and fo muft 
neceffarily be left to the prudence and wifdom 


Of Civil-Government. 327 

of thofe, whofe hands it is in, to be managed 
for the public good : for the laws that con- 
cern fubjects one amongft another, being to 
direct their actions, may well enough precede 
them. But what is to be done in reference 
to foreigners, depending, much upon their 
actions, and the variation of defigns and 
interefls, muft be left in great part to the 
prudence of thofe, who have this power com- 
mitted to them, to be managed by the befl 
of their fkill, for the advantage of the com- 

§. 148. Though, as I faid, the executive 
and federative power of every community be 
really diflinct in themfelves, yet they are 
hardly to be feparated, and placed at the 
fame time, in the hands of diflinct perfons ; 
for both of them requiring the force of the 
fociety for their exercife, it is almoft im- 
practicable to place the force of the com- 
mon-wealth in diflinct, and not fubordinate 
hands ; or that the executive and federative 
power mould be placed in perfons, that might 
act feparately, whereby the force of the public 
would be under different commands : which 
would be apt fome time or other to caufe 
diforder and ruin. 

Y 4 CHAP. 

328 Of Civil-Government. 


Of the Subordination of the Powers of the 
Common - wealth . 

§. 149. ' A ^Hough in a conftituted com- 
JL mon-wealth, ilanding upon 
its own bafis, and acting according to its own 
nature, that is, acting for the prefervation of 
the community, there can be but one fupreme 
power, which is the legiflative, to which all 
the reft are and mud be fubordinate, yet the 
legiilative being only a fiduciary power to act 
for certain ends, there remains frill in the 
people a fupreme power to remove or alter the 
legifiative, when they find the legislative act 
contrary to the trull: repofed in them : for all 
power given with trufi for the attaining an 
end, being limited by that end, whenever 
that end is manifestly neglected, or oppofed, 
the trufi muft necefiarily be forfeited, and the 
power devolve into the hands of thofe that 
gave it, who may place it anew where they 
mall think bell: for their fafety and fecurity. 
And thus the community perpetually retains a 
fupreme power of faving themfelves from the 
attempts and defigns of any body, even of 
their legiilators, whenever they mall be fo 
foolifh, or fo wicked, as to lay and carry on 
defigns againft the liberties and properties of 
the fubjecl: : for no man or fociety of men, 
having a power to deliver up their prefer- 


Of Civil-Government. 329 

nation, or confequently the means of it, to 
the abfolute will and arbitrary dominion of 
another ; when ever any one fhall go about 
to bring them into fuch a flavifh condition, 
they will always have a right to preferve, 
what they have not a power to part with - 9 
and to rid tbemfelves of thofe, who invade 
this fundamental, facred, and unalterable law 
of felf-prefcrvation, for which they entered 
into ibciety. And thus the community may 
be faid in this refpecl to be always the Jupreme 
power, but not as coniidered under any form 
of government, becaufe this power of the 
people can never take place till the govern- 
ment be diflblved. 

§, 150. In all cafes, whilft the government 
fubfifts, the legijlative is the Jupreme power : 
for what can give laws to another, mull; needs 
be fuperior to him ; and fince the legiilative 
is no otherwife legiilative of the fociety, but 
by the right it has to make laws for all the 
parts, and for every member of the fociety, 
prefcribing rules to their actions, and giving 
power of execution, where they are tranf- 
greffed, the legijlative mufl needs be the fu- 
preme, and all other powers, in any members 
or parts, of the fociety, derived from and 
fubordinate to it. 

§. 151. In fome common- wealths, where 
the legijlathe is not always in being, and the 
executive is vetted in a fingle perfon, who has 
alio a mare in the legiilative ; there that iingle 


22° Of Civil-Government. 
perfon in a very tolerable fenfe may alfo be 
called fupreme : not that he has in himfelf all 
the fupreme power, which is that of law- 
making ; but becaufe he has in him the fu- 
preme execution, from whom all inferior ma- 
gistrates derive all their feveral fubordinate 
powers, or at leafl the greateft part of them ; 
having alfo no legiflative fuperior to him, 
there being no law to be made without his 
confent, which cannot be expected mould 
ever fubject him to the other part of the 
legiflative, he is properly enough in this fenfe 
fupreme. But yet it is to be obferved, that 
tho' oaths of allegiance and fealty are taken 
to him, it is not to him as fupreme legiflator, 
but as fupreme executor of the law, made by 
a joint power of him with others ; allegiance 
being nothing but an obedience according to 
law, which when he violates, he has no right 
to obedience, nor can claim it otherwife than 
as the public perfon vefted with the power 
of the law, and fo is to be confidered as the 
image, phantom, or reprefentative of the 
common-wealth, acted by the will of the 
fociety, declared in its laws ; and thus he has 
no will, no power, but that of the law. But 
when he quits this reprefentation, this public 
will, and acts by his own private will, he 
degrades himfelf, and is but a fingle private 
perfon without power, and without will, that 
has any right to obedience ; the members 


Of Civil-Government. 331 

owing no obedience but to the public will of 
the fociety. 

§. 152. The executive power, placed any- 
where but in a perfon that has alfo a mare 
in the legillative, is viiibly fubordinate and 
accountable to it, and may be at pleafure 
changed and difplaced ; fo that it is not the 
fupreme executive power, that is exempt from 
fubordi nation, but the fupreme executive power 
veiled in one, who having a (hare in the 
legillative, has no diftincl: fuperior legillative 
to be fubordinate and accountable to, farther 
than he himfelf lhall join and confent ; fo 
that he is no more fubordinate than he himfelf 
ihall think fit, which one may certainly con- 
clude will be but very little. Of other mi- 
nijierial and fubordinate powers in a common- 
wealth, we need not fpeak, they being fo 
multiplied with infinite variety, in the dif- 
ferent cuftoms and conftitutions of diftincl: 
common-wealths, that it is impoftible to give 
a particular account of them all. Only thus 
much, which is necelfary to our prefent pur- 
pofe, we may take notice of concerning them, 
that they have no manner of authority, any of 
them, beyond what is by pofitive grant and 
commifTion delegated to them, and are all 
of them accountable to fome other power in 
the common-wealth. 

§. 153. It is not neceiTary, no, nor fo much 
as convenient, that the legifative mould be 
always in being ; but abfolutely necelfary that 
3 the 

332 Of Civil-Government. 

the executive power mould, becaufe there is 
not always need of new laws to be made, but 
always need of execution of the laws that 
are made. When the legi/Iative hath put the 
execution of the laws, they make, into other 
hands, they have a power ftill to refume it 
out of thole hands, when they find caufe, 
and to punifh for any mal-adminiftration 
againft the laws. The fame holds alfo in 
regard of the federative power, that and the 
executive being both minijlerim 'and fubordinate 
to the legi/Iative, which, as has been fhewed, 
in a constituted common-wealth is the Su- 
preme. The legiflative alfo in this cafe being 
iuppofed to conlift of feveral perfons, (for if 
it be a lingle perfon, it cannot but be always 
in being, and fo will, as fupreme, naturally 
have the fupreme executive power, together 
with the legiflative) may ajfemble, and exercife 
their legijlature, at the times that either their 
original conftitution, or their own adjourn- 
ment, appoints, or when they pleafe; if nei- 
ther of thefe hath appointed any time, or 
there be no other way preferibed to convoke 
them : for the fupreme power being placed 
in them by the people, it is always in them, 
and they may exercife it when they pleafe, 
unlefs by their original conftitution they are 
limited to certain feafons, or by an act of 
their fupreme power they have adjourned to 
a certain time ; and when that time comes, 
they have a right to afjembk and act again. 

4 §-* 1 54- 

Of Civil-Government. 333 

■§. 154. If the legijlathe, or any part of it, 
be made up of reprefentatives chofen for that 
time by the people, which afterwards return 
into the ordinary ftate of fubjects, and have 
no (hare in the legiilature but upon a new 
choice, this power of chufing muft alfo be 
exerciied by the people, either at certain ap- 
pointed feafons, or elfe when they are fum- 
moned to it ; and in this latter cafe, the 
power of convoking the legillative is ordi- 
narily placed in the executive, and has one 
of thefe two limitations in refpect of time : 
that either the original constitution requires 
their aj]embling and acting at certain intervals, 
and then the executive power does nothing 
but minifterially ifTue directions for their 
electing and affembling, according to due 
forms ; or elfe it is left to his prudence to 
call them by new elections, when the oc- 
caiions or exigencies of the public require 
the amendment of old, or making of new 
laws, or the redrefs or prevention of any 
inconveniencies, that lie on, or threaten the 

§. 155. It may be demanded here, What if 
the executive power, being poffeffed of the 
force of the common-wealth, mail make ufe 
of that force to hinder the meeting and acting 
of the legiflative, when the original confti- 
tution, or the public exigencies require it ? 
I fay, ufing force upon the people without 
authority, and contrary to the truft put in 


334 Of Civil-Government. 
him that does fo, is a ftate of war with the 
people, who have a right to reinjiate their 
legijlative in the exercife of their power : for 
having erected a legiflative, with an intent 
they mould exercife the power of making 
laws, either at certain fet times, or when 
there is need of it, when they are hindered 
by any force from what is fo neceflary to the 
fociety, and wherein the fafety and prefer- 
vation of the people confiils, the people have 
a right to remove it by force. In all ftates 
and conditions, the true remedy of force with- 
out authority, is to oppofe force to it. The 
ufe of force without authority, always puts 
him that ufes it into a fate of war, as the 
aggreflbr, and renders him liable to be treated 

§. 156. The power of affembling and dif- 
mijfmg the legijlative, placed in the executive, 
gives not the executive a fuperiority over it, 
but is a fiduciary trull: placed in him, for the 
fafety of the people, in a cafe where the un- 
certainty and variablenefs of human affairs 
could not bear a Heady fixed rule : for it not 
being poiTible, that the firft framers of the 
government mould, by any forefight, be fo 
much matters of future events, as to be able 
to prefix fo jufr periods of return and du- 
ration to the afjemblies of the legiflative^ in all 
times to come, that might exactly anfwer all 
the exigencies of the common-wealth ; the 
bed remedy could be found for this defect, 


Of Civil-Government. 335 

was to truft this to the prudence of one who 
was always to be prefent, and whofe bufinefs 
it was to watch over the public good. Con- 
stant freqimit meetings of the legifative, and 
long continuations of their aflcmblies, without 
necefTary occafion, could not but be burden- 
fome to the people, and muft neceffarily in 
time produce more dangerous inconveniencies, 
and yet the quick turn of affairs might be 
fometimes fuch as to need their prefent help: 
any delay of their convening might endanger 
the public; and fometimes too their bufinefs 
•might be fo great, that the limited time of 
their fitting might be too mort for their 
work, and rob the public of that benefit which 
could be had only from their mature deli- 
beration. What then could be done in this 
cafe to prevent the community from being 
expofed fome time or other to eminent ha- 
zard, on one fide or the other, by fixed in- 
tervals and periods, fet to the meeting and 
aBing of the legifative, but to intruft it to 
the prudence of fome, who being prefent, 
and acquainted with the ftate of public af- 
fairs, might make ufe of this prerogative for 
the public good ? and where elfe could this 
be fo well placed as in his hands, who was 
intrufted with the execution of the laws for 
the fame end ? Thus fuppofing the regulation 
of times for the afembling and fitting of the 
legifative, not fettled by the original confti- 
tution, it naturally fell into the hands of the 

. executive, 

336 Of Civil-GovernmExVT. 
executive, not as an arbitrary power depend- 
ing on his good pleafure, but with this truft 
always to have it exercifed only for the public 
weal, as the occurrences of times and change 
of affairs might require. Whether fettled 
periods of their convening, or a liberty left to 
the prince for convoking the legiflativc, or 
perhaps a mixture of both, hath the lean: 
inconvenience attending it, it is not my 
buiinefs here to inquire, but only to (hew, 
that though the executive power may have 
the prerogative of convoking and dijfolvtng fuch 
conventions of the legijlative, yet it is not 
thereby fuperior to it. 

§. i$y. Things of this world are in fo 
conftant a flux, that nothing remains long in 
the fame ftate. Thus people, riches, trade, 
power, change their ftations, flourishing 
mighty cities come to ruin, and prove in 
times neelecled defolate corners, whilil other 
unfrequented places grow into populous coun- 
tries, filled with wealth and inhabitants. But 
things not always changing equally, and 
private interefl often keeping up cuftoms and 
privileges, when the reafons of them are 
ceafed, it often comes to pafs, that in govern- 
ments, where part of the legiflativc coniifts 
of reprefentatives chofen by the people, that 
in trad of time this reprefeniaticn becomes 
very unequal and difproportionate to the rea- 
fons it was at firft eftablilhed upon. To what 
grofs abfurdities the following of cuftom, 


Of Civil-Government. ^37 
| when reafon has left it, may lead, we may 
be fatisfied, when we fee the bare name of 
! a town, of which there remains not fo much 
as the ruins, where fcarce fo much houiing 
as a iheepcote, or more inhabitants than a 
fhepherd is to be found, fends as many re- 
prefentatives to the grand affembly of law- 
makers, as a whole county numerous in 
people, and powerful in riches. This Gran- 
gers Hand amazed at, and every one muff, 
confefs needs a remedy; tho' mod think 
it hard to find one, becaufe the conftitution 
of the legiilative being the original and fu- 
preme act of the fociety, antecedent to all 
pofitive laws in it, and depending wholly on 
the people, no inferior power can alter it. 
And therefore the people, when the legijlative 
is once conftituted, having, in fuch a govern- 
ment as we have been fpeaking of, no power 
to act as long as the government frands ; this 
inconvenience is thought incapable of a re- 

§ . 158. Salus populifiiprema lex, i s c e r t a i n 1 y 
fo juft and fundamental a rule, that he, who 
iincerely follows it, cannot dangeroufly err. 
If therefore the executive, who has the 
power of convoking the legiilative, obferving 
rather the true proportion, than falliion of 
reprefentation, regulates, not by old cuftom, 
but true reafon, the number of members, in all 
places that have a right to be re- 
prefented, which no part of the people how- 

Z ever 

33B Of Civil-Government. 

ever incorporated can pretend to, but in pro* 
portion to the amftance which it affords to 
the public, it cannot be judged to have fet 
up a new legiilative, but to have reftored the 
old and true one, and to have rectified the 
diforders which fucceflion of time had in- 
fenfibly, as well as inevitably introduced : 
For it being the intereft as well as intention 
of the people, to have a fair and equal repre- 
fentative; whoever brings it neareft to that, 
is an undoubted friend to, and eftablifher of 
the government, and cannot mifs the confent 
and approbation of the community; prero- 
gative being nothing but a power, in the hands 
of the prince, to provide for the public good, 
in fuch cafes, which depending upon unfore- 
feen and uncertain occurrences, certain and 
unalterable laws could not fafely direct 
whatfoever mall be done manifeftly for the 
good of the people, and the eftabliming the 
government upon its true foundations, is, and 
always will be, juft prerogative. The power 
of erecting new corporations, and therewith 
new reprcfentatives, carries with it a fuppofi- 
tion, that in time the meafures of reprefeiitation 
might vary, and thofe places have a juft right 
to be reprefented which before had none ; and 
by the fame reafon, thofe ceafe to have a 
right, and be too inconiiderable for fuch a 
privilege, which before had it. 'Tis not a 
change from the prefent ftate, which perhaps 
corruption or decay has introduced, that makes 


Of Civil-Government. 339 

an inroad upon the government, but the ten- 
dency of it to injure or opprefs the people, 
and to fet up one part or party, with a diitinc- 
tion from, and an unequal mbjection of the 
reft. Whatfoever cannot but be acknow- 
ledged to be of advantage to the fociety, and 
people in general, upon juft and lafting mea- 
fures, will always, when done, juftify itfelf ; 
and whenever the people mall chufe their re~ 
prefentatives upon juft and undeniably equal 
meafures, fuitable to the original frame of the 
government, it cannot be doubted to be the 
will and act of the fociety, whoever permitted 
or caufed them fo to do. 


§. 159. \irHERE the legiflative and 
VV executive power are in diftindt 
hands, (as they are in all moderated monar- 
chies, and well-framed governments) there 
the good of the fociety requires, that feveral 
things ftiould be left to the difcretion of him 
that has the executive power : for the legif- 
lators not being able to forefee, and provide by 
laws, for all that may be ufeful to the com- 
munity, the executor of the laws, having the 
power in his hands, has by the common law 
of nature a right to make ufe of it for the good 
of the fociety, in many cafes, where the mu- 

Z 2 nicipal 

340 Of Civil-Government. 

nicipal law has given no direction, till the 
legiflative can conveniently be affembled to 
provide for it. Many things there are, which 
the law can by no means provide for; and 
thole muft neceffarily be left to the difcretion 
of him that has the executive power in his 
hands, to be ordered by him as the public 
good and advantage mall require : nay, it is 
fit that the laws themfelves mould in fome 
cafes give way to the executive power, or 
rather to this fundamental law of nature and 
government, viz. That as much as may be, 
all the members of the fociety are to be pre- 
ferved : for fmce many accidents may happen, 
wherein a ftxic~t. and rigid obfervation of the 
laws may do harm ; (as not to pull down an 
innocent man's houfe to ftop the fire, when the 
next to it is burning) and a man may come 
fomtimes within the reach of the law, which 
makes no diftinction of perfons, by an action 
that may deferve reward and pardon; 'tis fit the 
ruler mould have a power, in many cafes, to 
mitigate the feverity of the law, and pardon 
fome offenders : for the end of government 
being the prefervation of all y as much as may 
be, even the guilty are to be fpared, where 
it can prove no prejudice to the innocent. 

§. 1 60. This power to act according to 
difcretion, for the public good, without the 
prefcription of the law, and fometimes even 
againflit, is that which is called prerogative : 
for fince in fome governments the Jaw- 

Of Ci vi l»Go ver nment. 341 

making power is not always in being, and is 
ufiially too numerous, and fo too flow, for 
the difpatch requifite to execution ; and be- 
caufe alfo it is impoffible to forefee, and fo 
by laws to provide for, all accidents and necef- 
fities that may concern the public, or to 
make fuch laws as will do no harm, if they 
are executed with an inflexible rigour, on all 
occafions, and upon all perfons that may come 
in their way ; therefore there is a latitude 
left to the executive power, to do many things 
of choice which the laws do not prefcribe. 

§. 161. This power, whilft. employed for 
the benefit of the community, and fuitably to 
the truft and ends of the government, is un- 
doubted prerogative, and never is queftioned : 
for the people are-very feldom or never fcru- 
pulous or nice in the point ; they are far from 
examining prerogative, whilft it is in any 
tolerable degree employed for the ufe it was 
meant, that is, for the good of the people, 
and not manifeflly againil it : but if there 
comes to be a quejtion between the executive 
power and the people, about a thing claimed 
as a prerogative -, the tendency of the excrcife 
of fuch prerogative to the good or hurt of the 
people, will eafily decide that queftion. 

§. 162. It is eafy to conceive, that in the 
infancy of governments, when common- 
wealths differed little from families in number 
of people, they differed from them too but 
little in number of laws: and the governors, 
Z 3 being 

342 Of Civil-Government. 

being as the fathers of them, watching over 
them for their good, the government was 
almofl all prerogative. A few eftablifhed laws 
ferved the turn, and the difcretion and care of 
the ruler fupplied the reft. But when miftake 
or flattery prevailed with weak princes to make 
life of this power for private ends of their 
own, and not for the public good, the people 
were fain by exprefs laws to get prerogative 
determined in thofe points wherein they found 
difadvantap-e from it: and thus declared limi- 
tations of prerogative were by the people found 
neceffary in cafes which they and their ance- 
stors had left, in the utmoft latitude, to the 
wifdom of thofe princes who made no other 
but a right ufe of it, that is, for the good of 
their people. 

§. 163. And therefore' they have a very 
wrong notion of government, who fay, that 
the people have incroached upon the prerogative ', 
when they have got any part of it to be de- 
fined by poiitive laws : for in lb doing they 
have not pulled from the prince any thing that 
of right belonged to him, but only declared, 
that that power which they indefinitely left in 
his or his anceftors hands, to be exercifed for 
their good, was not a thing which they in- 
tended him when he ufed it otherwife : for 
the end of government being the good of the 
community, whatlbever alterations are made 
in it, tending to that end, cannot be an in- 
croachment upon any body, fince no body in 

5 g°- 

Of Civil-Government. 343 

government can have a right tending to any 
other end : and thofe only are incroachments 
which prejudice or hinder the public good. 
Thofe who fay otherwife, fpeak as if the 
prince had a diftincl: and feparate intereft from 
the good of the community, and was not 
made for it ; the root and fource from which 
fpring almoft all thofe evils and diforders 
which happen in kingly governments. And 
indeed, if that be fo, the people under his go- 
vernment are not a fociety of rational crea- 
tures, entered into a community for their 
mutual good; they are not fuch as have fet 
rulers over themfelves, to guard, and promote 
that good; but are to be looked on as an herd 
of inferior creatures under the dominion of a 
matter, who keeps them and works them for 
his own pleafure or profit. If men were fo 
void of reafon, and brutifh, as to enter into 
fociety upon fuch terms, prerogative might 
indeed be, what fome men would have it, 
an arbitrary power to do things hurtful to 
the people. 

§. 164. But fince a rational creature cannot 
be fuppofed, when free, to put himfelf into 
fubjection to another, for his own harm ; 
(though, where he finds a good and wife ruler, 
he may not perhaps think it either necefTary 
or ufeful to fet precife bounds to his power 
in all things) prerogative can be nothing but 
the people's permitting their rulers to do feve- 
ral things, of their own free choice, where 

Z 4 the 

344 Of Civil-Government. 
the law was filent, and fometimes too againfl 
the direct letter of the law, for the public 
good j and their acquiefcing in it when fo 
done: for as a good prince, who is mindful 
of the trufl put into his hands, and careful of 
the good of his people, cannot have too much 
prerogative, that is, power to do good ; fo a 
weak and ill prince, who would claim that 
power which his predeceffors exercifed with- 
out the direction of the law, as a prerogative 
belonging to him by right of his office, which 
he may exercife at his pleafure, to make or 
promote an intereft diffinct from that of the 
public, gives the people an occafion to claim 
their right, and limit that power, which, 
whilfl it was exercifed for their good, they 
were content mould be tacitly allowed. 

§.165. And therefore he that will look 
into the hijlcry of "England, will find, that pre- 
rogative was always largejl in the hands of 
our wifeft and befl princes; becaufe the people, 
obferving the whole tendency of their actions 
to be the public good, contefled not what 
was done without law to that end: or, if any 
human frailty or mifiake (for princes are but 
men, made as others) appeared in fome fmall 
declinations from that end -, yet 'twas vifible, 
the main of their conduct tended to nothing 
but the care of the public. The people there- 
fore, finding reafon to be fatisfied with thefe 
princes, whenever they acted without, or con- 
trary to the letter of the law, acquiefced in 


Of Civil-Government. 345 

what they did, and, without the leafl com- 
plaint, let them inlarge their prerogative as 
they pleafed, judging rightly, that they did 
nothing herein to the prejudice of their laws, 
fince they acled conformable to the foundation 
and end of all laws, the public good. 

§. 166. Such god-like princes indeed had 
fome title to arbitrary power by that argu- 
ment, that v/ould prove abfolute monarchy 
the beft government, as that which God 
himfelf governs the univerfeby; becaufefuch 
kings partake of his wifdom and goodnefs. 
Upon this is founded that faying, That the 
reigns of good princes have been always moll: 
dangerous to the liberties of their people : for 
when their fucceffors, managing the govern- 
ment with different thoughts, would draw 
the actions of thofe good rulers into precedent, 
and make them the ftandard of their prero- 
gative, as if what had been done only for the 
good of the people was a right in them to 
do y for the harm of the people, if they fo 
pleafed ; it has often occafioned conteft, and 
fometimes public diforders, before the people 
could recover their original right, and get 
that to be declared not to be prerogative, 
which truly was never fo ; fince it is im- 
poffible that any body in the fociety mould 
ever have a right to do the people harm ; 
though it be very poffible, and reafonable, 
that the people mould not go about to fet 
any bounds to the prerogative of thofe kings, 


346 Of Civil-Government. 

or rulers, who themfelves tranfgrerTed not 
the bounds of the public good : for prero- 
gative is nothing but the power of doing public 
good without a rule. 

§. 167. The power of calling parliaments in 
England, as to precife time, place, and du- 
ration, is certainly a prerogative of the king, 
but flill with this truft, that it mall be made 
ufe of for the good of the nation, as the 
exigencies of the times, and variety of oc- 
casions, mall require : for it being impoflible 
to forefee which mould always be the fitted 
place for them to aifemble in, and what the 
ben: feafon ; the choice of thefe was left with 
the executive power, as might be moft fub- 
fervient to the public good, and befl fuit the 
ends of parliaments. 

§. 168. The old queftion will be afked in 
this matter of prerogative. But who foall be 
judge when this power is made a right ufe of? 
I anfwer : between an executive power in 
being, with fuch a prerogative, and a legif- 
lative that depends upon his will for their 
convening, there can be no judge on earth ; 
as there can be none between the legislative 
and the people, mould either the executive, 
or the legislative, when they have got the 
power in their hands, defign, or go about 
to enflave or deftroy them. The people have 
no other remedy in this, as in all other cafes 
where they have no judge on earth, but to 
appeal to heaven : for the rulers, in fuch at- 


Of Civil-Government. 34.7 

tempts, exercifing a power the people never 
put into their hands, (who can never be fup- 
pofed to confent that any body fhould rule 
over them for their harm) do that which 
they have not a right to do. And where 
the body of the people, or any fingle man, is 
deprived of their right, or is under the exer- 
cife of a power without right, and have no 
appeal on earth, then they have a liberty to 
appeal to heaven, whenever they judge the 
caufe of fufficient moment. And therefore, 
though the people cannot be judge, fo as to 
have, by the constitution of that fociety, any 
fuperior power, to determine and give ef- 
fective fen fence in the cafe j yet they have, 
by a law antecedent and paramount to ail 
pofitive laws of men, referved that ultimate 
determination to themfelves which belongs 
to all mankind, where there lies no appeal 
on earth, viz. to judge, whether they have 
juft caufe to make their appeal to heaven. 
And this judgment they cannot part with, it 
being out of a man's power fo to fubmit 
himfelf to another, as to give him a liberty 
to deftroy him ; God and nature never al- 
lowing a man fo to abandon himfelf, as to 
neglecl: his own prefervation : and fince he 
cannot take away his own life, neither can 
he give another pow r er to take it. Nor let 
any one think, this lays a perpetual foun- 
dation for disorder -, for this operates not, till 
the inconveniency is fo great, that the majority 


348 Of Civil-Government. 
feel it, and are weary of it, and find a ne- 
cefiity to have it amended. But this the 
executive power, or wife princes, never need 
come in the danger of: and it is the 
thing, of all others, they have moft need to 
avoid, as of all others the moft perilous. 


Of PatemaU Political, and Defpotical Power s 
confidered together. 

§. 169. ' I *HOUGH I have had occafion 
to fpeak of thefe feparately be- 
fore, yet the great miftakes of late about go- 
vernment, having, as I fuppofe, arifen from 
confounding thefe diftintt powers one with 
another, it may not, perhaps, be amifs to. 
confider them here together. 

§. 170. Firft, then, Paternal or parental 
power is nothing but that which parents have 
over their children, to govern them for the 
children's good, till they come to the ufe of 
reafon, or a ftate of knowledge, wherein they 
may be fuppofed capable to underfland that 
rule, whether it be the law of nature, or the 
municipal law of their country, they are to 
govern themfelves by : capable, I fay, to 
know it, as well as feveral others, who live 
as freemen under that law. The affection 
and tendernefs which God hath planted in 
the breail of parents towards their children, 


Of Civil-Government. 349 

makes it evident, that this is not intended to 
be a fevere arbitrary government, but only for 
the help, inftruction, and prefervation of their 
offspring. But happen it as it will, there is, 
as I have proved, no reafon why it mould be 
thought to extend to life and death, at any 
time, over their children, more than over any 
body elfe; neither can there be any pretence 
why this parental power mould keep the child, 
when grown to a man, in fubjeclion to the 
will of his parents, any farther than having 
received life and education from his parents, 
obliges him to refpecl, honour, gratitude, 
amftance and fupport, all his life, to both fa- 
ther and mother. And thus, 'tis true, the 
paternal \% a natural government, but not at all 
extending itfelf to the ends and jurifdi&ions of 
that which is political. The power of the 
father doth not reach at all to the property of 
the child, which is only in his own difpofing. 
§. 171. Secondly ', Political power is that 
power, which every man having in the flate 
of nature, has given up into the hands of the 
fociety, and therein to the governors, whom 
the fociety hath fet over itielf, with this ex- 
prefs or tacit truft, that it (hall be employed 
for their good, and the prefervation of their 
property : now this power, which every man 
has in the fate of nature, and which he parts 
with to the fociety in all fuch cafes where 
the fociety can iecure him, is to ufe fuch 
means, for the preferving of his own pro- 
4 perty, 

350 Of Civil-Government. 

perty, as he thinks good, and nature allows 
him ; and to punifh the breach of the law of 
nature in others, fo as (according to the befk 
of his reafon) may moil conduce to the pre- 
fervation of himfelf, and the reft of mankind. 
So that the end a?id meafure of this power, 
when in every man's hands in the ilate of 
nature, being the prefervation of all of his 
fociety, that is, all mankind in general, it 
can have no other end or meafure, when in the 
hands of the magiftrate, but to preferve the 
members of that fociety in their lives, li- 
berties, and poiTeffions; and fo cannot be an 
abfolute, arbitrary power over their lives and 
fortunes, which are as much as pofiible to 
be preferved ', but a power to make laws, and 
annex fuch penalties to them, as may tend to 
the prefervation of the whole, by cutting oft 
thofe parts, and thofe only, which are fo 
corrupt, that they threaten the found and 
healthy, without which no feverity is lawful. 
And this power has its original only from com- 
pact and agreement, and the mutual confent 
of thofe who make up the community. 

§. 172. Thirdly, Dejpotical power is an ab- 
folute, arbitrary power one man has over 
another, to take away his life, whenever he 
pleafes. This is a power, which neither na- 
ture gives, for it has made no fuch diftinction 
between one man and another -, nor compact 
can convey : for man not having fuch an ar- 
bitrary power over his own life, cannot give 
another man fuch a power over it 5 but it is 


Of Civil-Government. 351 

the effect only of forfeiture, which the ag- 
grefTor makes of his own life, when he puts 
himfelf into the ftate of war with another : 
for having quitted reafon, which God hath 
given to be the rule betwixt man and man, 
and the common bond whereby human kind 
is united into one fellowship and fociety; and 
having renounced the way of peace which 
that teaches, and made ufe of the force of 
war, to compafs his unjuft ends upon ano- 
ther, where he has no right ; and fo revolt- 
ing from his own kind to that of beads, by 
making force, which is their's, to be his rule of 
right, he renders himfelf liable to be deftroyed 
by the injured perfon, and the reft of man- 
kind, that will join with him in the exe- 
cution of juftice, as any other wild beaft, or 
noxious brute, with whom mankind can have 
neither fociety nor fecurity*. And thus cap- 
tives, taken in a jufl and lawful war, and 
fuch only, are fiib]e5i to a defpotical power, 
which, as it ariies not from compact, fo nei- 
ther is it capable of any, but is the ftate of 
war continued : for what compact can be 
made with a man that is not mailer of his 
own life ? what condition can he perform ? 
and if he be once allowed to be mafter of 
his own life, the defpotical, arbitrary power 
of his mafter ceafes. He that is mafter of 
himfelf, and his own life, has a right too to 
the means of preferving it ; fo that as foon as 


* Another copy corrected by Mr. Locke, has it thus, Noxious 
hrute that is dejirufti-ve to their being. 

552 Of Civil-Government. 

compact enters, favery cecfes, and he fo far 
quits his abfolute power, and puts an end to 
the ftate of war, who enters into conditions 
with his captive. 

§. 173. Nature gives the firft of thefe, viz* 
paterjial power to parents for the benefit of 
their children during their minority, to fupply 
their want of ability, and understanding how 
to manage their property. (By property I 
mufl be underflood here, as in other places, 
to mean that property which men have in 
their perfons as well as goods.) Voluntary agree- 
ment gives the fecond, viz. political power to 
governors for the benefit of their fubjecls, to 
fecure them in the pofiefiion and ufe of their 
properties. And forfeiture gives the third 
defpotical power to lords for their own benefit, 
over thofe who are flripped of ail property. 

§. 174. He, that fhall confider the diftinct 
rife and extent, and the different ends of 
thefe feverai powers, will plainly fee, that 
paternal power comes as far fhort of that of 
the magijlrate, as defpotical exceeds it ; and 
that abfolute dominion, however placed, is fo 
far from being one kind of civil fociety, that 
it is as inconfiflent with it, as flavery is with 
property. Paternal power is only where mi- 
nority makes the child incapable to manage 
his property ; political, where men have pro- 
perty in their own diipofal ; and defpotical, 
over fuch as have no property at all. 


Of Civil-Government. %$% 


Of C O N ^U E s r. 

§■ J 75' f 1 'Hough governments can ori^ 
ginally have no other rife than 
that before mentioned, nor polities be founded 
on any thing but the confent of the people-, yet 
fuch have been the diforders ambition has 
filled the world with, that in the noife of 
war, which makes fo great a part of the 
hiftory of mankind, this confent is little taken 
notice of: and therefore many have miftaken 
the force of arms for the confent of the 
people, and reckon conqueil as one of the 
originals of government. But concjuejl is as 
far from fetting up any government, as de- 
molifhing an houfe is from building a new 
one in the place. Indeed, it often makes 
way for a new frame of a common-wealth, 
by deftroying the former -, but, without the 
confent of the people, can never erect a 
new one, 

§. 176. That the dggreffor, who puts him* 
felf into the ftate of war with another, and 
unjujlly invades another man's right, can, by 
fuch an unjuft war, never come to have a 
right over the conquered, will be eafily agreed 
by all men, who will not think, that robbers 
and pyrates have a right of empire over 
whomsoever they have force enough to ma- 
iler; or that men are bound by promifes, 
A a which 

354 Of Civil-Government. 
which unlawful force extorts from them. 
Should a robber break into my houfe, and 
with a dagger at my throat make me feal 
deeds to convey my eftate to him, would 
this give him any title ? Juft fuch a title, by 
his fvvord, has an imjiijl co?jquero?", who forces 
me into fubmiflion. The injury and the 
crime is equal, whether committed by the 
wearer of a crown, or fome petty villain. 
The title of the offender, and the number 
of his followers, make no difference in the 
offence, unlets it be to aggravate it. The 
only difference is, great robbers punifh little 
ones, to keep them in their obedience j but 
the great ones are rewarded with laurels and 
triumphs, becaufe they are too big for the 
weak hands of juffice in this world, and 
have the power in their own poffeiTion, which 
ihould punifh offenders. What is my re- 
medy againft a robber, that fo broke into 
my houfe ? Appeal to the law for juftice. 
But perhaps juftice is denie'd, or I am crippled 
and cannot ftir, robbed and have not the 
means to do it. If God has taken away all 
means of feeking remedy, there is nothing 
left but patience. But my fon, when able, 
may feek the relief of the law, which I am 
denied : he or his fon may renew his appeal, 
till he recover his right. But the conquered, 
or their children, have no court, no- arbitrator 
on earth to appeal to. Then they may ap- 
peal* as Jephtha did, to heaven* and repeat 


Of Civil-Government. 355 

their appeal till they have recovered the native 
right of their anceftors, which was, to have 
fuch a legiflative over them, as the majority 
mould approve, and freely acquiefce in. If it 
be objected, This would caufe endlefs trouble ; 
I anfwer, no more than jufKce does, where 
lhe lies open to all that appeal to her. He 
that troubles his neighbour without a caufe, 
is punifhed for it by the juftice of the court 
he appeals to : and he that appeals to heaven 
miift be fure he has right on his fide ; and a 
right too that is worth the trouble and cofl 
of the appeal, as he will anfwer at a tribunal 
that cannot be deceived, and will be fure to 
retribute to every one according to the mif- 
chiefs he hath created to his fellow fubjects; 
that is, any part of mankind : from whence 
it is plain, that he that conquers in an unjujl 
Tar can thereby have no title to the fubjeftion 
and obedience of the conquered. 

§. 177. But fuppofing victory favours the 
right fide, let us conlider a conqueror in a 
lawful war, and fee what power he gets, 
and over whom. 

Firjl, It is plain he gets no power hy his 
conquejl over thofe that conquered with him. 
They that fought on his fide cannot fuffer by 
the conqueft, but mufl at leaft be as much 
freemen as they were before. And moft 
commonly they ferve upon terms, and on 
condition to (hare with their leader, and 
enjoy a part of the fpoil, and other advantages 
A a 2 that 

356 Of Civil-Government. 

that attend the conquering fword ; or at lead 
have a part of the fubdued country beftowed 
upon them. And the conquering people are 
not, I hope, to be Jlcrves by conqneft, and wear 
their laurels only to (hew they are Sacrifices 
to their leaders triumph. They that found 
abfolute monarchy upon the title of the 
fword, make their heroes, who are the founders 
of iuch monarchies, arrant Draw-ca?z- -firs , and 
forget they had any officers and foldiers that 
fought on their fide in the battles they won, 
or aftifted them in the fubduing, or fhared 
in poffefling, the countries they mattered. 
We are told by fome, that the Englifh mo- 
narchy is founded iri' the Norman conqueft, 
and that our princes have thereby a title to 
abfolute dominion : which if it were true, 
(as by the hiftory it appears otherwife) and 
that William had a right to make ..war on this 
ifland; yet his dominion by conqueft could 
reach no farther than to the Saxons and 'Bri- 
tons, that were then inhabitants of this courM * 
try. The Normans that came with him, and 
helped to conquer, and all defcended from 
them, are freemen, and no Subjects by con- 
queft ; let that give what dominion it will. 
And if I, or any body elfe, lhall claim free- 
dom, as derived from them, it will be very 
hard to prove the contrary : and it is plain, 
the law, that has made no diftinction between 
the one and the other, intends not there 


Of Civil-Government. 357 

mould be any difference in their freedom or 

§. 178. But fuppofing, which feldom hap- 
pens, that the conquerors and conquered 
never incorporate into one people, under the 
fame laws and freedom ; let us fee next 
what power a lawful conqueror has over the 
fubdued: and that I fay is purely defpotical. 
He has an abfolute power over the lives of 
thofe who by an unjuft war have forfeited 
them j but not over the lives or fortunes of 
thofe who engaged not in the war, nor over 
the pofleffions even of thofe who were actually 
engaged in it. 

§. 179. Secondly, I fay then the conqueror 
gets no power but only over thofe who have 
actually atfifted, concurred, or confented to 
that unjuft force that is ufed againft him : 
for the people having given to their gover- 
nors no power to do an unjuft thing, fuch as 
is to make an unjuft war, (for they never 
had fuch a power in themfelvcs) they ought 
not to be charged as guilty of the violence 
and unjuftice that is committed in an unjuft 
war, any farther than they actually abet it ; no 
more than they are to be thought guilty of any 
violence or oppreffion their governors fhould 
ufe upon the people themfelves, or any part 
of their fellow fubjedts, they having im- 
powered them no more to the one than to 
the other. Conquerors, it is true, feldom 
{rouble themfelves to make the diftin&ion, 
A a 3 but 

358 Of Civil-Government. 

but they willingly permit the confufion of 
war to fweep all together : but yet this alters 
not the right ; for the conquerors power 
over the lives of the conquered, being only 
becaufe they have ufed force to do, or main- 
tain an injuflice, he can have that power 
only over thofe who have concurred in that 
force ; all the reft are innocent ; and he has 
jio more title over the people of that country, 
who have done him no injury, and fo have 
made no forfeiture of their lives, than he has 
over any other, who, without any injuries or 
provocations, have lived upon fair terms with 

§. 180. 'Thirdly, The power a conqueror gets 

over thofe he overcomes in a juji war, is 

-perfectly defpotical : he has an abfolute power 

over the lives of thofe, who, by putting them- 

felves in a ftate of war, have forfeited them; 

but he has not thereby a right and title to 

their pofTeffions. This I doubt not, but at 

firft fight will feem a fcrange doctrine, it 

being fo quite contrary to the practice of the 

world ; there being nothing more familiar in 

fpeaking of the dominion of countries, than 

to fay fuch an one conquered it; as if 

conqueft, without any more ado, conveyed 

a right of poflefiion. But when we con- 

fider, that the practice of the ftrong and 

powerful, how univerfal foever it may be, 

is feldom the rule of right, however it be 

one part of the fubjection of the conquered, 


Of Civil-Government. 359 

not to argue againft the conditions cut out 
to them by the conquering fword. 

§. 181. Though in all war there be ufually 
a complication of force and damage, and the 
aggreflbr feldom fails to harm the eftate, 
when he ufes force againft the perfons of 
thofe he makes war upon ; yet it is the ufe 
of force only that puts a man into the ftate of 
war : for whether by force he begins the 
injury, or elfe having quietly, and by fraud, 
done the injury, he refufes to make repa- 
ration, and by force maintains it, (which is 
the fame thing, as at firft to have done it by 
force) it is the unjuft ufe of force that makes 
the war : for he that breaks open my houfe, 
and violently turns me out of doors ; or 
having peaceably got in, by force keeps me 
out, does in effect the fame thing ; fuppoling 
we are in fuch a ftate, that we have no com- 
mon judge on earth, whom I may appeal to, 
and to whom we are both obliged to fubmit : 
for of fuch I am now fpeaking. It is the 
unjuft ufe of force then, that puts a man into 
the ftate of war with another j and thereby 
he that is guilty of it makes a forfeiture of 
his life : for quitting reafon, which is the 
rule given between man and man, and ufing 
force, the way of beafts, he becomes liable 
to be deftroyed by him he ufes force againft, 
as any favage ravenous beaft, that is dan- 
gerous to his being. 

A a 4 §. i§2. 

360 Of Civil-Government. 

§. 182. But becaufe the mi {carriages of 

the father are no faults of the children, and 
they may be rational and peaceable, not- 
withstanding the brutifhnefs and injuftice of 
the father ; the father, by his mifcarriages 
and violence, can forfeit but his own life, 
but involves not his children in his guilt or 
deitruction. His sjoods, which nature, that 
willeth the prefervation of all mankind as 
much as is pofnble, hath made to belong to 
the children to keep them from perifhing, do 
fHll continue to belong to his children : for 
fuppofing them not to have joined in the 
war, either thro' infancy, abfence, or choice, 
they have done nothing to forfeit them : nor 
has the conqueror any right to take them away, 
by the bare title of having fubdued him that 
by force attempted his deftruction ; though 
perhaps he may have fome right to them, to 
repair the damages he has fuftained by the 
war, and the defence of his own right ; 
which how far it reaches to the poiTeffions. 
of the conquered, we mall fee by and by. 
So that he that by conquejl has a right over a 
mans per/on to deitroy him if he pleafes, has 
not thereby a right over his ejiate to pofTefs. 
and enjoy it : for it is the brutal force the 
aggrefTor has ufed, that gives his adverfary 
a right to take away his life, and deftroy 
him if he pleafes, as a noxious creature -, but 
it is damage fuftained that alone gives him 
litle to. another man's goods : for though t 


Of Civil-Government. 361 

may kill a thief that fets on me in the high- 
way, yet I may not (which feems lefs) take 
away his money, and let him go : this would 
be robbery on my fide. His force, and the 
ftate of war he put himfelf in, made him 
forfeit his life, but gave me no title to his 
goods. The right then of conqueji extends 
only to the lives of thofe who joined in the 
war, not to their ejlates, but only in order to 
make reparation for the damages received, 
and the charges of the war, and that too 
with refervation of the right of the innocent 
wife and children. 

§. 183. Let the conqueror have as much 
juftice on his lide, as could be fuppofed, he 
has no right to feize more than the vanquished 
could forfeit : his life is at the vi&or's mercy ; 
and his fervice and goods he may appro- 
priate, to make himfelf reparation ; but he 
cannot take the goods of his wife and chil- 
dren ; they too had a title to the goods he 
enjoyed, and their fhares in the eftate he 
poiTerTed : for example, I in the ftate of na- 
ture (and all common-wealths are in the 
ftate of nature one with another) have in- 
jured another man, and refilling to give fatif- 
faction, it comes to a ftate of war, wherein 
my defending by force what I had gotten 
unjuftly, makes me the aggrefTor. I am 
conquered : my life, it is true, as forfeit, is 
at mercy, but not my wife's and children's. 
They made not the war, nor affifted in it. 

I could 

362 Of Civil-Government. 

I could not forfeit their lives ; they were not 
mine to forfeit. My wife had a mare in 
my eftate ; that neither could I forfeit. And 
my children alfo, being born of me, had a 
right to be maintained out of my labour or 
Jubilance. Here then is the cafe : the con- 
queror has a title to reparation for damages 
received, and the children have a title to 
their father's eftate for their fubfiflence : for 
as to the wife's fliare, whether her own la- 
bour, or compact, gave her a title to it, it is 
plain, her hufband could not forfeit what 
was her's. What mult be done in the cafe ? 
I anfwer ; the fundamental law of nature 
being, that all, as much as may be, mould 
be preferved, it follows, that if there be not 
enough fully to fatisfy both, viz. for the 
conqueror s loj/es, and children's maintenance, 
he that hath, and to fpare, muft remit fome- 
thing of his full iatisfaclion, and give way to 
the preffing and preferable title of thole who 
are in danger to perifh without it. 

§. 184. But fuppofing the charge and da* 
mages of' the war are to be made up to the 
conqueror, to the utmofl farthing ; and that 
the children of the vanquished, fpoiled of 
all their father's goods, are to be left to ftarve 
and perifh ; yet the fatisfying of what mail, 
on this fcore, be due to the conqueror, will 
fcarce give him a title to any country he fhall 
conquer: for the damages of war can fcarce 
amount to the value of any confiderable tract 


■ • 

Of Civil-Government. 363 

of land, in any part of the world, where 
all the land is poflefTed, and none lies wade. 
And if I have not taken away the con- 
queror's land, which, being vanquished, it is 
impofTible I mould j fcarce any other fpoil I 
have done him can amount to the value of 
mine, fuppofing it equally cultivated, and of 
an extent any way coming near what I had 
over-run of his. The deftruction of a year's 
product or two (for it feldom reaches four 
or live) is the utmoft fpoil that ufually can 
be done : for as to money, and fuch riches 
and treafure taken away, thefe are none of 
nature's goods, they have but a fantaftical 
imaginary value : nature has put no fuch 
upon them : they are of no more account 
by her Standard, than the wampompeke of 
the Americans to an European prince, or the 
filver money of Europe would have been 
formerly to an American. And five years 
product is not worth the perpetual inheritance 
of land, where all is porTeffed, and none re- 
mains wade, to be taken up by him that is 
diiieized : which will be eaiily granted, if 
one do but take away the imaginary value 
of money, the difproportion being more than 
between five and five hundred ; though, at 
the fame time, half a year's product is more 
worth than the inheritance, where there being 
more land than the inhabitants pofiefs and 
make ufe of, any one has liberty to make 
life of the wade : but there conquerors take 


364 Of Civil-Government. 
little care to poilefs themfelves of the lands of the 
vanquijhed. No damage therefore, that men 
in the ftate of nature (as all princes and go- 
vernments are in reference to one another) 
fuffer from one another, can give a conqueror 
power to difpofTefs the poiterity of the van- 
quished, and turn them out of that inhe- 
ritance, which ought to be the pofTeiTion of 
them and their defcendants to all generations. 
The conqueror indeed will be apt to think 
himfelf mafter : and it is the very condition 
of the fubdued not to be able to difpute their 
right. But if that be all, it gives no other 
title than what bare force gives to the ftronger 
over the weaker : and, by this reafon, he 
that is ltrongefl will have a right to whatever 
he pleafes to feize on. 

§. 1 8 <^. Over thofe then that joined with 
him in the war, and over thofe of the fubdued 
country that oppofed him not, and the po- 
iferity even of thofe that did, the conqueror, 
even in a juft war, hath, by his conqueit, no 
right of dominion : they are free from any 
fubjec~tion to him, and if their former go- 
vernment be difTolved, they are at liberty to 
begin and erect another to themfelves. 

§. 186. The conqueror, it is true, ufually, 
by the force he has over them, compels 
them, with a fword at their breafts, to ftoop 
to his conditions, and fubmit to fuch a go- 
vernment as he pleafes to afford them ; but 
the enquiry is, what right he has to do i'o » 


Of Civil-Government. 365 

If it be faid, they fubmit by their own con- 
fent, then this allows their own confent to be 
neceff'ary to give the conqueror a title to rale 
over them. It remains only to be confidered, 
whether promifes extorted by force, without 
right, can be thought confent, and bow far 
they bind. To which I mall fay, they bind 
not at all ; becaufe whatfoever another gets 
from me by force, I ftill retain the right of, 
and he is obliged prefently to reftore. He 
that forces my horfe from me, ought pre- 
fently to reftore him, and I have ftill a right 
to retake him. By the fame reafon, he that 
forced a promife from me, ought prefently to 
reftore it, i. e. quit me of the obligation of 
it; or I may refume it myfelf, i. e. chufe 
whether I will perform it : for the law of 
nature laying an obligation on me only by 
the rules (lie prefcribes, cannot oblige me 
by the violation of her rules : fuch is the ex- 
torting any thing from me by force. Nor 
does it at all alter the cafe to fay, I gave ??iy 
promife, no more than it excufes the force, 
and paffes the right, when I put my hand in 
my pocket, and deliver my purfe myfelf to 
a thief, who demands it with a piftol at my 

§. 187. From all which it follows, that 
the government of a conqueror, impofed by force 
on the fubdued, againft whom he had no 
right of war, or who joined not in the war 


366 Op Civil-Government. 

againft. him, where he had right, has no ohli~ 
gation upon them. 

§. 188. But let us fuppofe, that all the 
men of that community, being all members 
of the fame body politic, may be taken to 
have joined in that unjuft war wherein they 
are fubdued, and fo their lives are at the 
mercy of the conqueror. 

§. 189. I fay, this concerns not their 
children who are in their minority : for 
fince a father hath not, in himfelf, a power 
over the life or liberty of his child, no act 
of his can poffibly forfeit it. So that the 
children, whatever may have happened to the 
fathers, are freemen, and the abiolute power 
of the conqueror reaches no farther than the 
perlbns of the men that were fubdued by 
him, and dies with them : and mould he 
govern them as flaves, fubjected to his ab- 
iolute arbitrary power, he has no fucb right of 
dominion over their children. He can have 
no power over them but by their own con- 
fen t, whatever he may drive them to fay or do ; 
and he has no lawfull authority, whilil force, 
and not choice, compels them to fubmif- 

§. 1 90. Every man is born with a double 
right : firfi, a right of freedom to his perfon, 
which no other man has a power over, but the 
free difpofal of it lies in himfelf. Secondly, 
a right, before any other man, to inherit with 
his brethren his father s goods. 

§. 191. 

Of Civil-Government. 367 

§. 191. By the firft of thefe, a man Is na- 
turally free from iubjeclion to any govern- 
ment, tho' he be born in a place under its 
jurifdiction; but if he difclaim the lawful 
government of the country he was borruin, 
he muft alfo quit the right that belonged to 
him by the laws of it, and the porTeffions 
there defcending to him from his anceflors, 
if it were a government made by their con- 

§. 192. By the fecond, the inhabitants of 
any country, who are defcended, and derive 
a title to their eflates from thofe who are 
fubdued, and had a government forced upon 
them againft their free confents, retain a 
right to the pojfejjion of their ancejhrs, though 
they confent not freely to the government, 
whofe hard conditions were by force im- 
pofed on the pofTefibrs of that country : for 
the fir ft conqueror never having had a title to 
the land of that country, the people who are 
the defcendants of, or claim under thofe who 
were forced to fubmit to the yoke of a go- 
vernment by conftraint, have always a right 
to make it off, and free themfelves from the 
ufurpation or tyranny which the fword hath 
brought in upon them, till their rulers put 
them under fuch a frame of government as 
they willingly and of choice confent to. 
Who doubts but the Grecian chriflians, de- 
fcendants of the ancient pofTefibrs of that 
country, may juftly cafl off the Turki/h 


36$ Of Civil-Government. 

yoke, which they have fo long groaned under* 
whenever they have an opportunity to do it? 
For no government can have a right to 
obedience from a people who have not freely 
confented to it; which they can never be 
fuppofed to do, till either they are put in a 
full ftate of liberty to chufe their govern- 
ment and governors, or at leaft till they 
have fuch ftanding laws, to which they have 
by themfelves or their reprefentatives given 
their free confent, and alfo till they are 
allowed their due property, which is fo to 
be proprietors of what they have, that no 
body can take away any part of it without 
their own confent, without which, men 
under any government are not in the ftate of 
freemen, but are direct flaves under the force 
of war. 

§. 193. But granting that the conqueror in 
a juft war has a right to the eftates, as well 
as power over the perfons, of the conquered; 
which, it is plain, he hath not: nothing of 
abfolute power will follow from hence, in the 
continuance of the government; becaufe the 
defcendants of thefe being all freemen, if 
he grants them eftates and pofTeffions to in- 
habit his country, (without which it would 
be worth nothing) whatfoever he grants 
them, they have, fo far as it is granted, pro* 
ferty in. The nature whereof is, that with- 
out a maris own confent it cannot be taken from 

§• 194- 

Of Civil-Government. 369 

§. 194. Their perfons are free by a native 
right, and their properties, be they more or 
lefs, are their own, and at their own difpofe, 
and not at his; or elfe it is no property. 
Suppofing the conqueror gives to one man 
a thoufand acres, to him and his heirs for 
ever i to another he lets a thoufand acres for 
his life, under the rent of 50I. or 500I. per 
a?m. has not the one of thefe a right to 
his thoufand acres for ever, and the other, 
during his life, paying the faid rent ? and 
hath not the tenant for life a property in all 
that he gets over and above his rent, by his 
labour and induftry during the faid term, 
fuppofing it be double the rent? Can any 
one fay, the king, or conqueror, after his 
grant, may by his power of conqueror take 
away all, or part of the land from the heirs 
of one, or from the other during his life, 
he paying the rent ? or can he take away 
from either the goods or money they have 
got upon the faid land, at his pleafure ? If 
he can, then all free and voluntary contrasts 
ceafe, and are void in the world -, there needs 
nothing to diffolve them at any time, but 
power enough: and all the grants and pro- 
mifes of men in power are but mockery and 
collufion : for can there be any thing more 
ridiculous than to fay, I give you and your's 
this for ever, and that in the furefr. and" moil 
folemn way of conveyance can be devifed j 
and yet it is to be underftood, that I have 
B b right, 

370 Of Civil-Government. 
right, if I pleafe, to take it away from you 
again to morrow? 

§.195. I will not difpute now whether 
princes are exempt from the laws of their 
country ; but this I am furc, they owe fub- 
jection to the laws of God and nature. No 
body, no power, can exempt them from the 
obligations of that eternal law. Thofe are 
fo great, and fo ftrong, in the cafe of pro- 
mifes, that omnipotency itfelf can be tied by 
them. Grants, promifes, and oaths, are 
bonds that bold the Almighty : whatever fome 
flatterers fay to princes of the world, who 
all together, with ail their people joined to 
them, are, in comparifon of the great God, 
but as a drop of the bucket, or a dufl on 
the balance, inconfiderable, nothing ! 

§. 196. The lliort of the cafe in conquefi 
is this : the conqueror, if he have a jurl 
caufe, has a defpotical right over the perfons 
of all, that actually aided, and concurred in 
the war againfr. him, and a right to make up 
his damage and cod out of their labour and 
eftates, fo he injure not the right of any 
other. Over the reft of the people, if there 
were any that confented not to the war, and 
over the children of the captives themielves, 
or the poffeflions of either, he has no power ; 
and fo can have, by virtue of conquefi, no law- 
ful title himfelf to dominion over them, or 
derive it to his pofterity ; but is an aggreiTor, 
if he attempts upon their properties, and 


Of Civil-Government. 371 

thereby puts himfelf in a ftate of war againft 
them, and has no better a right of princi- 
pality, he, nor any of his fuccefTors, than 
Hingar, or Hubba, the Danes, had here in 
England-, or Spartacus* had he conquered 
Italy, would have had ; which is to have 
their yoke caft off, as foon as God mall give 
thofe under their fubjedtion courage and 
opportunity to do it. Thus, notwithftand- 
ing whatever title the kings of Affyria had 
over fudah, by the fword, God affifted He- 
zekiah to throw off the dominion of that 
conquering empire. And the lord was with 
Hezekiah, and he prof per ed -, wherefore he went 
forth, and he rebelled againjl the king of Af- 
fyria, and ferved him not, 2 Kings xviii. 7. 
Whence it is plain, that making off a power, 
which force, and not right, hath fet over any 
one, though it hath the name of rebellion, 
yet is no offence before God, but is that 
which he allows and countenances, though 
even promiies and covenants, when obtained 
by force, have intervened : for it is very 
probable, to any one that reads the ftory 
of Ahaz and Hezekiah attentively, that the 
Affyrians fubdued Ahaz, and depofed him, 
and made Hezekiah king in his father's life- 
time ; and that Hezekiah by agreement had 
done him homage, and paid him tribute all 
this time. 

B b 2 CHAP. 

^jz Of Civil-Government, 


§. 197. A S conqueft may be called a fo^ 
/\ reign ufurpation, fo ufurpation 
is a kind of domeftic conqueft:, with this 
difference, that an ufurper can never have 
right on his fide, it being no ufurpation, but 
where one is got into the poffefjion of what 
another has right to. This, fo far as it is 
vfurpation, is a change only of perfons, but 
not of the forms and rules of the govern- 
ment: for if the ufurper extend his power 
beyond what of right belonged to the lawful 
princes, or governors of the commonwealth, 
it is tyranny added to nfurpatiori. 

§.198. In all lawful governments, the 
designation of the perfons, who are to bear 
rule, is as natural and neceiTary a part as the 
form of the government itfelf, and is that 
which had its efcablimment originally from 
the people 5 the anarchy being much alike, 
to have no form of government at all ; or to 
agree, that it ill all be monarchical, but to 
appoint no way to delign the perfon that (hall 
have the power, and be the monarch. 
Hence all commonwealths, with the form 
of government eitablifhed, have rules alio 
of appointing thofe who are to have any 
mare in the public authority, and fettled 
methods pf conveying the right to them: 


Of C i v i l-G o v e r n m e n t . 373 

for the anarchy is much alike, to have no 
form of government at all ; or to agree that 
it mall be monarchical, but to appoint no 
way to know or defign the peribn that (hall 
have the power, and be the monarch. 
Whoever gets into the exercife of any part 
of the power, by other ways than what the 
laws of the community have prefcribed, hath 
no right to be obeyed, though the form of 
die commonwealth be llill preferved ; fince 
he is not the perfon the laws have appointed, 
and confequently not the perfon the people 
have confented to. Nor can fuch an nfurper, 
or any deriving from him, ever have a title* 
till the people are both at liberty to confenty 
and have actually confented to allow, and 
confirm in him the power he hath till then 

of r T R A N N T. 

%• x 99- A $ ufurpation is the exercife of 
£\. power, which another ha ill a 
right to; fo tyranny is the exercife of power 
beyond right , which no body can have a right 
to. And this is making ufe of the power 
any one has in his hands, not for the good 
of thofe who are under it, but for his own 
private feparate advantage. When the go- 
vernor, however intitled, makes not the 
law, but his will, the rule; and his corn- 
B b 3 mands 

374 Of Civil-Government. 

mands and actions are not directed to the 
prefervation of the properties of his people, 
but the fatisfaction of his own ambition, 
revenge, covetoufnefs, or any other irregular 

§. 200. If one can doubt this to be truth, 
or reafon, becaufe it comes from the obfeure 
hand of a fubjec~t, I hope the authority of 
a king will make it pafs with him. King 
'James the firfl, in his fpeech to the parlia- 
ment, 1603, tells them thus, / will ever 
prefer the weal of the public, and of the whole 
commonwealth, in making of good laws and 
confutations, to any particular and private ends 
of mine ; thinking ever the wealth and weal 
of the commonwealth to be my greatefi weal and 
worldly felicity - y a point wherein a lawful king 
doth direBly differ from a tyrant : for I do ac- 
knowledge, that the fpecial and great ejl point of 
difference that is betwee?i a rightful king and 
an ufurping tyrant, is this, that whereas the 
proud and ambitious tyrant doth think his king- 
dom and people are only ordained for fatisfaclion 
of his defres and unreafo?iable appetites, the 
righteous and juft king doth by the contrary ac- 
knowledge himfelf to be ordained for the pro- 
curing of the wealth and property of his people. 
And again, in his fpeech to the parliament, 
1609, he hath thefe words, The king binds 
himfelf by a double oath, to the obfervation of 
the fundamental laws of his kingdom -, tacitly, 
as by being a king, and Jo bound to protect as 


Of Ci vil- Gove rnment. 27s 
well the people, as the laws of bis kingdom ; and 
expre/ly, by his oath at his coronation , fo as 
every jujl king, in a fettled kingdom, is bound 
to olferve that paclion 7nade to his people, by 
his laws, in framing his government agreeable 
thereunfo, according to that paclion which 
God made with Noah after the deluge. Here- 
ajter, feed-time and harvefl, and cold and heat, 
and fummer and winter, and day and night, 
jl:all not ccafe while the earth remaineth. And 
therefore a king governing in a fettled kingdom, 
leaves to be a king, and degenerates into a ty- 
rant, as foon as he leaves off to ride according 
to his laws. And a little after, Therefore all 
kings that are not tyrants, or perjured, will 
be glad to bound themfelves within the limits of 
their laws -, and they that perfuade them the 
contrary, are vipers, and pejts both againft 
them and the commonwealth. Thus that 
learned king, who well underftood the 
notion of things, makes the difference be- 
twixt a king and a tyrant to confifl only in 
this, that one makes the laws the bounds of 
his power, and the good of the public, the 
end of his government ; the other makes all 
give way to his own will and appetite. 

§. 201. It is a miflake, to think this fault 
is proper only to monarchies ; other forms 
of government are liable to it, as well as 
that : for wherever the power, that is put 
in any hands for the government of the 
people, and the prefervaticn of their pro- 
B b 4 perties, 


376 Of Civil-Government. 

perties, is applied to other ends, and made ufe 
of to impoverifb, harafs, or fubdue them to 
the arbitrary and irregular commands of thofe 
that have it; there it prefently becomes 
tyranny, whether thofe that thus ufe it are one 
or many. Thus we read of the thirty tyrants 
at Athens, as well as one at Syracufe - y and the 
intolerable dominion of the Decemviri at 
Rome was nothing better. 

§. 202. Where- ever law ends, tyranny begins > 
if the law be tranfgrefled to another's harm ; 
and whofoever in authority exceeds the power 
given him by the law, and makes ufe of the 
force he has under his command, to com- 
pafs that upon the fubjecl, which the law 
allows not, ceafes in that to be a magiftrate ; 
and, acting without authority, may be op- 
poled, as any other man, who by force in- 
vades the right of another. This is acknow- 
ledged in fubordinate magiftrates. He that 
hath authority to feize my perfon in the 
ftreet. may be oppofed as a thief and a 
robber, if he endeavours to break into my 
houfe to execute a writ, notwithstanding 
that I know he has fuch a warrant, and 
fuch a legal authority, as will impower him 
to arrefl me abroad. And why this mould 
not hold in the highe(t, as well as in the 
moft inferior magistrate, I would gladly 
be informed. Is it reafonable, that the 
eldeft brother, becaufe he has the greater!: 
part of his father's eflate, fhould thereby 


Of Civil-Government. XTJ 
have a right to take away any of his younger 
brothers portions ? or that a rich man, who 
pofTerTed a whole country, mould from thence 
have a right to feize, when he pleafed, the 
cottage and garden of his poor neighbour ? 
The being rightfully porTefled of great power 
and riches, exceedingly beyond the greatell 
part of the fons of Adam, is fo far from 
being an excufe, much lefs a reafon, for 
rapine and oppreffion, which the endamaging 
another without authority is, that it is a great 
aggravation of it : for the exceeding the 
bounds of authority is no more a right in. 
a great, than in a petty officer ; no more ju- 
ftifiable in a king than a conftable ; but is fo 
much the worfe in him, in that he has more 
truft put in him, has already a much greater 
fhare than the reft of his brethren, and is 
fuppofed, from the advantages of his edu- 
cation, employment, and counfellors, to be 
more knowing in the mcaiures of right and 


§. 203. May the commands then of a prince 
be oppofed? may he be reiifted as often as 
any one (hall find himfelf aggrieved, and but 
imagine he has not right done him ? This 
will unhinge and overturn all polities, and, 
inftead of government and order, leave no- 
thing but anarchy and confufion. 

§. 204. To this I anfwer, that force is to 
be oppofed to nothing, but to unjuft and un- 
lawful force -, whoever makes any oppofitioh 


378 Of Civil-Government. 
in any other cafe, draws on himfelf a jure, 
condemnation both from God and man ; and 
fo no fuch danger or confufion will follow, 
as is often fuggeftcd : for, 

§. 205. Firjly As, in fome countries, the 
perfon of the prince by the law is facred ; 
and fo, whatever he commands or does, his 
perfon is frill free from all queflion or vio- 
lence, not liable to force, or any judicial 
cenfure or condemnation. But yet oppofition 
may be made to the illegal acts of any in- 
ferior officer, or other commiffioned by him; 
unlefs he will, by actually putting himfelf into 
a ftate of war with his people, diilblve the 
government, and leave them to that defence 
which belongs to every one in the flate of 
nature : for of fuch things who can tell what 
the end will be ? and a neighbour kingdom 
has mewed the world an odd example. In all 
other cafes thz facrednefs of the per/bn excepts 
/. him from all inconveniencies> whereby he is 
•iju,iecure, whilft the government ftands, from 
all violence and harm whatfoever; than which 
there cannot be a wifer constitution : for the 
harm he can do in his own perfon not being 
likely to happen often, nor to extend itfelf 
far; nor being able by his- fingle frrength to 
fubvert the laws, nor opprefs the body of 
the people, mould any prince have fo much 
weaknefs, and ill nature as to be willing to 
do it, the inconveniency of fome particular 
mifchiefs, that may happen fometimes, when 


Of Civil-Government. 379 

a heady prince comes to the throne, are well 
recompenfed by the peace of the public, 
and fecurity of the government, in the perfon 
of the chief magiftrate, thus fet out of the 
reach of danger : it being fafer for the body, 
that fome few private men ihould be fome- 
times in danger to furTer, than that the head 
of the republic mould be eafily, and upon 
flight occafions, expofed. 

§. 206. Secondly, But this privilege, be- 
longing only to the king's perfon, hinders 
not, but they may be queftioned, oppofed, 
and refitted, who ufe unjufl force, though 
they pretend a commiffion from him, which 
the law authorizes not ; as is plain in the 
cafe of him that has the king's writ to arreft 
a man, which is a full commiffion from the 
king; and yet he that has it cannot break 
open a man's houfe to do it, nor execute 
this command of the king upon certain days, 
nor in certain places, though this commiffion 
have no fuch exception in it; but they are 
the limitations of the law, which if any one 
tranfgrefs, the king's commiffion excufes him 
not : for the king's authority being given 
him only by the law, he cannot impovver 
any one to act againft the law, or juftify 
him, by his commiffion, in fo doing; the 
commiffion, or command of any magi fir ate, where 
he has no authority, being as void and infig- 
nificant, as that of any private man ; the 
difference between the one and the other, ' 
4 being 


380 Of Civil -Government. 
being that the magistrate has fome authority 
fo far, and to fuch ends, and the private 
man has none at all : for it is not the com- 
mijjion, but the authority, that gives the right 
of a&ing ; and again/1 the laws there can be 
no authority. But, notwithstanding fuch re- 
finance, the king's perfon and authority are 
flill both fecured, and fo no danger to go- 
vernor or government. 

§. 207. Thirdly, Suppofing a government 
wherein the perfon of the chief magistrate is 
not thus facred ; yet this doctrine of the law- 
fulnefs of refijling all unlawful exercifes of 
his power, will not upon every flight oc- 
cafion in danger him, or imbroil the govern - 
me?2t : for where the injured party may be 
relieved, and his damages repaired by appeal 
to the law, there can be no pretence for 
force, which is only to be ufed where a man 
is intercepted from appealing to the law : 
for nothing is to be accounted hoftile force, 
but where it leaves not the remedy of fuch 
an appeal ; and it is fuch force alone, that 
puts him that ufes it into a Jlate of war, and 
makes it lawful to refift. him. A man with 
a fword in his hand demands my purfe in the 
high-way, when perhaps I have not twelve 
pence in my pocket : this man I may law- 
fully kill. To another I deliver 100 1. to 
hold only whilft I alight, which he refufes 
to reflore me, when I am got up again, but 
draws his fword to defend the polleffion of it 


Of Civil-Government. 381 

by force, if I endeavour to retake it. The 
mifchief this man does me is a hundred, 
or pofiibly a thoufand times more than the 
other perhaps intended me (whom Ikilledbe- 
fore he really did me any); and yet I might 
lawfully kill the one, and cannot fo much 
as hurt the other lawfully. The reafon 
whereof is plain j becaufe the one ufing 
force, which threatened my life, I could not 
have time to appeal to the law to fecure it ; 
and when it was gone, it was too late to 
appeal. The law could not reftore life to 
my dead carcafs : the lofs was irreparable ; 
which to prevent, the law of nature gave 
me a right to dejiroy him, who had put him- 
felf into a ftate of war with me, and threatened 
my destruction. But in the other cafe, my 
life not being in danger, I may have the 
benefit of appealing to the law, and have re- 
paration for my iool. that way. 

§. 208. Fourthly, But if the unlawful adls 
done by the magistrate be maintained (by 
the power he has got), and the remedy which 
is due by law, be by the fame power ob- 
structed ; yet the right of reffiing, even in. 
fuch manlier!: adts of tyranny, will not fud- 
denly, or on flight occaflons, dijlurb the go- 
vernmeni : for if it reach no farther than fome 
private men's cafes, though they have a right 
to defend themfelves, and to recover by force 
what by unlawful force is taken from them ; 
yet the right to do fo will not eafily engage 


2$2 Of Civil-Government. 
them in a con tell:, wherein they are fure to 
perifh ; it being as impoffible for one, or a 
few oppreffed men to dijhirb the government , 
where the body of the people do not think 
themfelves concerned in it, as for a raving 
mad-man, or heady mal-content to overturn 
a well-fettled flate \ the people being as little 
apt to follow the one, as the other. 

§. 209. But if either thefe illegal acts have 
extended to the majority of the people; or 
if the mifchief and opprefTion has lighted only 
on fome few, but in fuch cafes, as the pre- 
cedent, and confequences feem to threaten 
all ; and they are perfuaded in their con- 
fciences, that their laws, and with them their 
cflates, liberties, and lives are in danger, and 
perhaps their religion too ; how they will be 
hindered from refilling illegal force, ufed 
againft them, I cannot tell. This is an //z- 
convenience, I confefs, that attends all gtrccrn- 
ments whatfoever, when the governors have 
brought it to this pafs, to be generally fu- 
fpected of their people ; the moll dangerous 
fbte which they can poflibly put themfelves 
in - y wherein they are the lefs to be pitied, 
becaufe it is fo eafy to be avoided ; it being 
as impoffible for a governor, if he really 
means the good of his people, and the pre- 
fervation of them, and their laws together, 
not to make them fee ancf feel it, as it is for 
the father of a family, not to let his children 
fee he loves, and takes care of them. 

§. 210. 

Of Civil-Government. 383 

§. 210. But if all the world fliull obferve 
pretences of one kind, and actions of ano- 
ther -, arts ufed to elude the law, and the 
truii of prerogative (which is an arbitrary- 
power in fome things left in the prince's hand 
to do good, not harm to the people) employ- 
ed contrary to the end for which it was 
given : if the people fhall find the minifters 
and fubordinate magiflrates chofen fuitable 
to fuch ends, and favoured, or laid by, pro- 
portionably as they promote or oppofe them : 
if they fee feveral experiments made of arbi- 
trary power, and that religion underhand 
favoured, (tho' publicly proclaimed againft) 
which is readieft to introduce it ; and the 
operators in it fupported, as much as may' 
be , and when that cannot be done, yet ap- 
proved frill, and liked the better : if a long 
train of aSlions Jheiv the councils all tending 
that way ; how can a man any more hinder 
himielf from being perfuaded in his own 
mind > which way things are going; or from 
cafling about how to fave himfelf, than he 
could from believing the captain of the fhip 
he was in, was carrying him, and the rell 
of the company, to Algiers 9 when he found 
him always fleering that courfe, though crofs 
winds, leaks in his fhip, and want of men 
and provifions did often force him to turn his 
courfe another way for fome time, which he 
fteadily returned to again, as foon as the 
wind, weather, and other circumftances 
would let him ? 


384 Of Civil-Government. 


Of the Difjolntion of Government, 

§• 211. TTE that will with any clearnefs 
JL JL fpeak of the difjolntion of govern- 
ment, ought in the firft place to diftinguifh 
between the difjblution of the fociety -and the 
dijfolution of the government. That which 
makes the community, and brings men out 
of the loofe ftate of nature, into one politic 
fociety, is the agreement which every one has 
with the reft to incorporate, and acl as one 
bodv, and fo be one diftincl: common-wealth. 
The ufual, and almoft only way whereby 
this union is difjblved, is the inroad of foreign 
force making a conqueft upon them : for in 
that cafe, (not being able to maintain and 
fupport themfelves, as one intire and "inde- 
pendent body) the union belonging to that 
body which confifted therein, muft necef- 
farily ceafe, and fo every one return to the 
ft ate he was in before, with a liberty to fhift 
for himfelf, and provide for his own fafety, 
as he thinks fit, in fome other fociety. When- 
ever the fociety is difjblved, it is certain the 
government of that fociety cannot remain. 
Thus conquerors fwords often cut up go- 
vernments by the roots, and mangle focieties 
to pieces, fenarating the fubdued or fcattered 
multitude from the protection of, and de- 
pendence on, that fociety which ought to 


Of Civil-Government, ? 8 < 

have preferved them from violence. The 
world is too well inftru&ed in, and too for- 
ward to allow of, this way of diflblving of 
governments, to need any more to be faid of 
it; and there wants not much argument -to 
prove, that where the fociety is dijjohed, trfe 
government cannot remain; that being as 
impoffible, as for the frame of an houie to 
fubfiil when the materials of it are fcat- 
tered and diffipated by a whirl-wind, or 
jumbled into a confufed heap by an earth- 

§. 212. Beficles this over- turning from 
without, governments are difolved from within, 

Fir ft t When the legijlative is altered. Civil 
fociety being a flate of peace, amongft thofe 
who are of it, from whom the ifate of war 
is excluded by the umpirage, which they 
have provided in their legi dative, for the 
ending all differences that may arife amongfl 
any of them, it is in their Icgijlaiive^ that the 
members of a common-wealth are united, 
and combined together into one coherent 
living body. This is the foul that gives form, 
life, and unity, to the common-wealth : from 
hence the feveral members have their mutual 
influence, fympathy, and connexion : and 
therefore, when the kgijiative is broken, or 
diffblved, diffolution and death follows : for 
the e fence and anion of the fociety confiding in 
having one will, the legiflative, when once 
eilabli flied by the majority, has the declaring, ' 
and as it were keeping of that will. The 

C c con- 

^86 Of Civil-Government. 

conflitution of the legijlative is the firft and 
fundamental act of fociety, whereby pro- 
vision is made for the continuation of their 
union, under the direction of perfons, and 
bonds of laws, made by perfons authorized 
thereunto, by the confent and appointment 
of the people, without which no one man, 
or number of men, amongft: them, can have 
authority of making laws that fhall be bind- 
ing to the reft. When any one, or more, 
fhall take upon them to make laws, whom 
the people have not appointed fo to do, 
they make laws without authority, which 
the people are not therefore bound to obey ; 
by which means they come again to be out 
of fu ejection, and may conftitute to them- 
felves a new kgi/!ative, as they think beft, 
being in full liberty to refill the force of 
thofe, who without authority would impofe 
any thing upon them. Every one is at the 
difpofure of his own will, when thofe who 
had, by the delegation of the fociety, the 
declaring of the public will, are excluded 
from it, and others ufurp the place, who 
have no fuch authority or delegation. 

§. 213. This being ufually brought about 
by fuch in the common-wealth who mifufe 
the power they have ; it is hard to confider 
it aright, and know at whofe door to lay it, 
without knowing the form of government in 
which it happens. Let us fuppofe then the 
legiflative placed in the concurrence of three 
diftmct perfons. 

1. A 

Of Civil-Government. 3 87 

1. A Tingle hereditary perfon, having the 
Conitant, fupreme, executive power, and with 
it the power of convoking and dilTolving the 
other two within certain periods of time. 

2. An affembly of hereditary nobility. 

3. An aflembly of reprefentatives chofen, 
pro tempore, by the people. Such a form of 
government fuppofed, it is evident, 

§. 214. Fitjiy That when fuch a fingle 
perfon, or prince, fets up his own arbitrary 
will in place of the laws, which are the will 
of the fociety, declared by the legiflative, 
then the legijlative is changed : for that being 
in effect the legislative, whofe rules and laws 
are put in execution, and required to be 
obeyed ; when other laws are fet up, and 
other rules pretended, and inforced, than 
what the legiflative, conftituted by the fo- 
ciety, have enacted, it is plain that the le- 
gijlative is changed. Whoever introduces new 
laws, not being thereunto authorized by the 
fundamental appointment of the fociety, or 
fubverts the old, difowns and overturns the 
power by which they were made, and fo 
lets up a new legiflative. 

§. 215. Secondly, When the prince hinders 
the legitlative from affembling in its due 
time, or from acting freely, puriuant to thofe 
ends for which it was conftituted, the legis- 
lative is altered : for it is not a certain number 
of men, no, nor their meeting, unlefs they 
have alio freedom of debating, and leifure 
C c 2 of 

388 Of Civil-Government. 

of perfecting, what is for the good of the 
fociety, wherein the legiflative coniifts : when 
thefe are taken away or altered, fo as to de- 
prive the fociety of the due exercife of their 
power, the legiflative is truly altered ; for it 
is not names that conftitute governments, 
but the ufe and exercife of thofe powers that 
were intended to accompany them ; fo that 
he, who takes away the freedom, or hinders 
the acting of the legiflative in its due feafons, 
in effect takes away the legiflative, and puts 
an end to the government. 

§. 216. 'Thirdly, When, by the arbitrary 
power of the prince, the electors, or ways 
of election, are altered, without the confent, 
and contrary to the common intereft of the 
people, there alfo the legiflative is altered : for, 
if others than thofe whom the fociety hath 
authorized thereunto, do chufe, or in another 
way than what the fociety hath prefcribed, 
thofe chofen are not the legiflative appointed 
by the people. 

§. 217. Fourthly, The delivery alfo of the 
people into the fubjection of a foreign power, 
either by the prince, or by the legiflative, is 
certainly a change of the legiflative, and fo a 
dijfolution of the government : for the end why 
people entered into fociety being to be pre- 
served one intire, free, independent fociety, 
to be governed by its own laws ; this is loft, 
whenever they are given up into the power 
of another. 

§. 218. 

Of Civil-Gov^knment. 389 

§.218. Why, in fuch a conftitution as this, 
the diffolution of the government in thefe cafes 
is to be imputed to the prince, is evident ; 
becaufe he, having the force, treafure and 
offices of the ftate to employ, and often per- 
fuading himfelf, or being flattered by others, 
that as fupreme magiflrate he is uncapable of 
controul -, he alone is in a condition to make 
great advances toward fuch changes, under 
pretence of lawful authority, and has it in 
his hands to terrify or fupprefs oppofers, as 
factious, feditious, and enemies to the go- 
vernment : whereas no other part of the 
legiflative, or people, is capable by themfelves 
to attempt any alteration of the legiflative, 
without open and vifible rebellion, apt enough 
to be taken notice of, which, when it pre- 
vails, produces effects very little different 
from foreign conquer!:. Befides, the prince 
in fuch a form of government, having the 
power of diffolving the other parts of the 
legiflative, and thereby rendering them private 
perfons, they can never in oppofition to him, 
or without his concurrence, alter the legif- 
lative by a law, his confent being neceffary 
to give any of their decrees that fanction. 
But yet, fo far as the other parts of the le- 
giflative any way contribute to any attempt 
upon the government, and do either pro- 
mote, or not, what lies in them, hinder fuch 
defigns, they are guilty, and partake in this, 
C c 3 which 

390 Of Civil-Government. 

which is certainly the greatefl crime men can 
be guilty of one towards another. 

§.219. There is one way more whereby 
fuch a government may be diffolved, and that 
is, when he who. has the fupreme executive 
power, neglects and abandons that charge, 
fo that the laws already made can no longer 
be put in execution. This is demonftratively 
to reduce all to anarchy, and fo effectually to 
dijfohe the government : for laws not being 
made for themfelves, but to be, by their exe- 
cution, the bonds of the fociety, to keep every 
part of the body politic in its due place and 
function -, when that totally ccafes, the go- 
vernment vifibly ceafes, and the people be- 
come a confuted multitude, without order 
or connexion. Where there is no longer the 
adminiitration of juftice, for the fecuring of 
men's rights, nor any remaining power 
within the community to direct the force, or 
provide for the neceflities of the public, 
there certainly is no government left. Where 
the laws cannot be executed, it is all one as 
if there were no laws ; and a government 
without laws is, I fuppofe, a myftery in 
politics, unconceivable to human capacity, 
and inconfiftent with human fociety. 

§. 220. In thefe and the like cafes, when 
the government is dijfolved, the people are at 
liberty to provide for themfelves, by erecting 
a new legislative, differing from the other, 
by the change of perfons, or form, or both s 


Of Civil-Government. 391 

as they mall find it mofl for their fafety and 
good : for the fociety can never, by the fault 
of another, lofe the native and original right 
it has to preferve itfelf, which can only be 
done by a fettled legiilative, and a fair and 
impartial execution of the laws made by it. 
But the ftate of mankind is not fo miferable 
that they are not capable of ufing this re- 
medy, till it be too late to look for any, 
To tell people they may provide for the mf elves, 
by erecting a new legiilative, when by op- 
preffion, artifice, or being delivered over to a 
foreign power, their old one is gone, is only 
to tell them, they may expect relief when 
it is too late, and the evil is pail: cure. This 
is in effect no more than to bid them firffc 
be Haves, and then to take care of their li- 
berty; and when their chains are on, tell 
them, they may act like freemen. This, if 
barely fo, is rather mockery than relief; and 
men can never be fecure from tyranny, if 
there be no means to efcape it till they are 
perfectly under it : and therefore it is, that 
they have not only a right to get out of it, 
but to prevent it. 

§.221. There is therefore, fecondly, another 
way whereby governments are diff'ohed, and 
that is, when the legiflative, or the prince, 
either of them, act contrary to their truft. 

Firfty The legiflative ails againft the truft 

repofed in them, when they endeavour to 

invade the property of the fubject, and to 

C c 4 make 

392 Of Civil-Government. 

rnake themfelves, or any part of the com- 
munity, matters, or arbitrary difpofers of the 
lives, liberties, or fortunes of the people. 

§. 222. The reafon why men enter into 
fociety, is the prefervation of their property ; 
and the end why they chufe and authorize a 
legifiative, is, that there may be laws made, 
and rules fet, as guards and fences to the 
properties of all the members of the fociety, 
to limit the power, and moderate the do- 
minion, of every part and member of the fo- 
ciety : for fince it can never be fuppofed to 
be the will of the fociety, that the legifiative 
ihould have a power to deftroy that which 
every one defigns to fecure, by entering into 
fociety, and for which the people fubmitted 
themfelves to legiflators of their own making ; 
whenever the kgijlators endeavour to take away, 
and deftroy the property of the people, or to 
reduce them to ilavery under arbitrary power, 
they put themfelves into a Hate of war with 
the people, who are thereupon abfolved from 
any farther obedience, and are left to the 
common refuge, which God hath provided 
for all men, againfi force and violence. 
Whensoever therefore the Legifiative. fha!l 
tranfgrefs this fundamental rule of fociety ; 
and either by ambition, fear, folly or cor- 
ruption, endeavQ&F tQ gr.afp themfelves, or put 
into the hands of any other, an abfclute power 
over the lives, liberties, and eilates of the 
people; by this breach of trull they Jo [/ 


Of Civil-Government. 393 

the power the people had put into their 
hands for quite contrary ends, and it devolves 
to the people, who have a right to refume 
their original liberty, and, by the eftablifh- 
ment of a new legislative^ (fuch as they fhall 
think fit) provide for their own fafety and 
fecarity, which is the end for which they are 
in fociety. What I have faid here, concern- 
ing the legiflative in general, holds true alfo 
concerning the fupreme executor, who having 
a double truft put in him, both to have a 
part in the legiilative, and the fupreme exe- 
cution of the lav/, acts againfl both, when 
he goes about to fet up his own arbitrary- 
will as the law of the fociety. He acJs alfo 
contrary to his truft, when he either employs 
the force, treafure, and offices of the fociety, 
to corrupt the reprefentatives, and gain them 
to his purpofes -, or openly pre-engages the 
electors, and prefcribes to their choice, fuch, 
whom he has, by follicitations, threats, pro- 
mifes, or otherwife, v/on to his defigns ; and 
employs them to bring in fuch, who have 
promifed before-hand what to vote, and 
what to enact. Thus to regulate candidates 
and electors, and new-model the ways of 
election, what is it but to cut up the go- 
vernment by the roots, and poifon the very 
fountain of public fecurity ? for the people 
having referved to themfelves the choice of 
their reprejentatives, as the fence to their 
properties, could do it for no other end, but 
4 that 

394 O p Civil-Government. 
that they might always be freely chofen, and 
fo chofen, freely 'act, and advife, as the ne- 
ceffity of the common-wealth, and the public 
good fhould, upon examination, and mature 
debate, be judged to require. This, thofe 
who give their votes before they hear the 
debate, and have weighed the reafons on all 
fides, are not capable of doing. To prepare 
fuch an aifembly as this, and endeavour to 
fet up the declared abettors of his own will, 
for the true reprefentatives of the people, and 
the law-makers of the fociety, is certainly as 
great a breach of truft, and as perfect a de- 
claration of a defign to fubvert the govern- 
ment, as is poflible to be met with. To 
which, if one fhall add rewards and punish- 
ments vilibly employed to the fame end, and 
all the arts of perverted law made ufe of, 
to take off and deftroy all that ftand in the 
way of fuch a defign, and will not comply 
and confent to betray the liberties of their 
country, it will be paft doubt what is doing. 
What power they ought to have in the fo- 
ciety, who thus employ it contrary to the 
trull went along with it in its firft inftitution, 
Is eafy to determine ; and one cannot but 
fee, that he, who has once attempted any 
fuch thing as this, cannot any longer be 

§. 223. To this perhaps it will be faid, 
that the people being ignorant, and always 
difcontented, to lay the foundation of go- 

Of Civil-Government. 395 

vernment in the • unfteady opinion and un- 
certain humour of the people, is to expofe it 
to certain ruin ; and no government will be 
able long to fubjiji, if the people may fet up 
a new legiflative, whenever they take offence 
at the old one. To this I anfvver, Quite the 
contrary. People are not fo eafily got out 
of their old forms, as fome are apt to fuggeft. 
They are hardly to be prevailed with to amend 
the acknowledged faults in the frame they 
have been accultomed to. And if there be 
any original defects, or adventitious ones in- 
troduced by time, or corruption ; it is not an 
eafy thing to get them changed, even when 
all the world fees there is an opportunity for 
it. This flownefs and averfion in the people 
to quit their old constitutions, has, in the 
many revolutions which have been feen in 
this kingdom, in this and former ages, frill 
kept us to, or, after fome interval of fruitlefs 
attempts, ftill brought us back again to our 
old legiilative of king, lords and commons : 
and whatever provocations have made the 
crown be taken from fome of our princes 
heads, they never carried the people fo far as 
to place it in another line. 

§. 224. But it will be faid, this hypotbefis 
lays a ferment for frequent rebellion. To 
which I anfvver, 

Firjl, No more than any ether hypotbefis : 
for when the people- are made miferable, and 
£nd themfelves expefed to the ill ufage of ar- 

396 Of Civil-Government. 

bltrary power ■, cry up their governors, as much 
as you will, for fons of Jupiter; let them be 
facred and divine, defcended, or authorized 
from heaven ; give them out for whom or 
what you pleafe, the fame will happen. The 
people generally ill treated, and contrary to 
right, will be ready upon any occafion to 
eafe themfelves of a burden that fits heavy 
upon them. They will wifh, and feek for 
the opportunity, which in the change, weak- 
nefs and accidents of human affairs, feldom 
delays long to offer itfelf. He muft have 
lived but a little while in the world, who 
has not feen examples of this in his time ; 
and he muff have read very little, who cannot 
produce examples of it in all forts of govern- 
ments in the world. 

§. 225. Secondly, I anfwer, fuch revolutions 
happen not upon every little mifmanagement 
in public affairs. Great mi/lakes in the ruling 
part, many wrong and inconvenient laws, and 
all the flips of human frailty, will be born by 
the people without mutiny or murmur. But 
if a long train of abufes, prevarications and 
artifices, all tending the fame way, make the 
defign vifible to the people, and they cannot 
but feel what they lie under, and fee whi- 
ther they are going; it is not to be won- 
dered, that they mould then rouze them- 
felves, and endeavour to put the rule into 
fuch hands which may fecure to them the 
ends for which government was at firft erect- 
ed j and without which, ancient names, and 


Of Civil-Government. 397 

fpecious forms, are fo far from being better, 
that thev are much worfe, than the ftate of 
nature, or pure anarchy; the inconveniencies 
being all as great and as near, but the remedy- 
farther off and more difficult. 

§. 226. Thirdly, I anfwer, that this doflrine 
of a power in the people of providing for 
their fafety a-new, by a new legiflative, when 
their legiflators have acted contrary to their 
truft, by invading their property, is the befi 
fence againfi rebellion, and the probableft means 
to hinder it: for rebellion being an oppofition, 
not to perfons, but authority, which is founded 
only in the conflitutions and laws of the 
government ; thofe, whoever they be, who by 
force break through, and by force juftify 
their violation of them, are truly and pro- 
perly rebels : for when men, by entering into 
fociety and civil-government, have excluded 
force, and introduced laws for the prefer- 
vation of property, peace, and unity amongft 
themfelves, thofe who fet up force again in 
oppofition to the laws, do rebellare, that is, 
bring back again the ftate of war, and are 
properly rebels : which they who are in 
power, (by the pretence they have to autho- 
rity, the temptation of force they have in 
their hands, and the flattery of thofe about 
them) being likelieft to do; the propereft way 
to prevent the evil, is to (hew them the 
danger and injuftice of it, who are under the 
greater]; temptation to run into it. 

§. 227. 

398 Of Civil-Government^ 

§. 227. In both the fore-mentioned cafes* 
when either the legislative is changed, or the 
legiflators act contrary to the end for which 
they were constituted ; thofe who are guilty 
arc guilty of rebellion : for if any one by force 
takes away the established legislative of any 
fociety, and the laws by them made, pur- 
fuant to their truSt, he thereby takes away 
the umpirage, which every one had confented 
to, for a peaceable decifion of all their con- 
troverfies, and a bar to the State of war amongSl 
them. They, who remove, or change the 
legislative, take away this decisive power, 
which no body can have, but by the appoint- 
ment and confent of the people -, and fo de- 
ftroying the authority which the people did, 
and no body elfe can let up, and introducing a 
power which the people hath not authorized, 
they actually introduce a Jlate of wary which 
is that of force without authority : and thus, 
by removing the legislative established by the 
fociety, (in whofe decisions the people ac- 
quiefccd and united, as to that of their own 
will) they untie the knot, and expofe the 
people a-new to the fate of war. And it thole, 
who by force take away the legislative, are 
rebels, the legiflators themfelves, as has been 
ihewn, can be no lefs eSteemed fo ; when 
they, who were fet up for the protection, 
and prefervation of the people, their liberties 
and properties, Shall by force invade and 
endeavour to take them away ; and fo they 


Of Civil-Government. 399 

putting themfelves into a ftate of war with 
thofe who made them the protectors and 
guardians of their peace, are properly, and 
with the greateft aggravation, rebel/antes, re- 

§. 228. But if they, who fay it lays a foun- 
dation for rebellion, mean that it may occafion 
civil wars, or interline broils, to tell the people 
they are abfolved from obedience when il- 
legal attempts are made upon their liberties 
or properties, and may oppofe the unlawful 
violence of thofe who were their magiftrates, 
when they invade their properties contrary 
to the trull put in them ; and that therefore 
this doctrine is not to be allowed, being fo 
deftructive to the peace of the world : they 
may as well fay, upon the fame ground, that 
honeft men may not oppofe robbers or pirates, 
becaufe this may occasion diforder or blood- 
med. If any mifchicf come in fuch cafes, it 
is not to be charged upon him who defends 
his own right, but on him that invades his 
neighbours. If the innocent honefl man 
muft quietly quit all he has, for peace fake, 
to him who will lay violent hands upon it, 
I deiire it may be considered, what a kind of 
peace there will be in the world, which con- 
fifts only in violence and rapine ; and which 
is to be maintained only for the benefit of 
robbers and opprerTors. Who would not 
think it an admirable peace betwixt the 
mighty and the mean, when the lamb, 


460 OF Civil-Government. 

without refinance, yielded his throat to be 
torn by the imperious wolf? Polyphemus % den 
gives us a perfect pattern of fuch a peace, 
and fuch a government, wherein Vlyffes and 
his companions had nothing to do, but quictlv 
to fuller themfelves to be devoured. And 
no doubt Ulyffes, who was a prudent man, 
preached up pajtve obedience, and exhorted 
them to a quiet fubmiffion, by rep refen ting 
to them of what concernment peace was to 
mankind -, and by (hewing the inconveniences 
might happen, if they mould offer to refifl 
Polyphemus, who had now the power over 

§. 229. The end of government is the 
good of mankind ; and which is bejl for 
mankind, that the people mould be always 
expofed to the boundlefs will of tyranny, or 
that the rulers mould be fometimes liable to 
be oppofed, when they grow exorbitant in 
the ufe of their power, and employ it for 
the deflruclion, and not the prefervation of 
the properties of their people ? 

§. 230. Nor let any one fay, that mifchief 
can arife from hence, as often as it mail 
pleafe a bufy head, or turbulent fpirit, to 
defire the alteration of the government. It 
is true, fuch men may ftir, whenever they 
pleafe ; but it will be only to their own juft 
ruin and perdition : for till the mifchief be 
grown general, and the ill defigns of the 
rulers become vifible, or their attempts fen- 


Of Civil-Government. 401 

fible to the greater part, the people, who are 
more difpofed to fuffer than right themfelves 
by refinance, are not apt to fKr. The ex 4 - 
amples of particular injuftice, or oppreffion 
of here and there an unfortunate man, moves 
them not. But if they univerfally have a 
perfuafion, grounded upon manifeft evidence, 
that deiigns are carrying on againft their li^- 
berties, and the general courfe and tendency 
of things cannot but give them ftrong fu- 
ipicions of the evil intention of their go- 
vernors, who is to be blamed for it ? Who 
can help it, if they, who might avoid it, 
bring themfelves into this fufpicion ? Are 
the people to be blamed* if they have the 
fenfe of rational creatures, and can think of 
things no otherwife than as they find and 
feel them ? And is it not rather their fault, 
who put things intofuch a poftufe, that they 
would not have them thought to be as they 
are ? I grant, that the pride, ambition, and 
turbulency of private men have fometimes 
caufed great diforders in common-wealths, 
and factions have been fatal to ftates and 
kingdoms. But whether the mifchief hath 
qftener begun in the peoples ivantonnefs, and a 
delire to caft off the lawful authority of 
their rulers, or in the rulers infoknce, and 
endeavours to get and exercife an arbitrary 
power over their people ; whether oppreffion, 
or difobedience, gave the nrfl rife to the dif- 
order, I leave it to impartial hiftory to de~ 
D d termine. 

402 Of Civil-Government. 

termine. This I am fure, whoever, either 
ruler or fubject, by force goes about to in- 
vade the rights of either prince or people, 
and lays the foundation for overturning the 
constitution and frame of any juji government, 
is highly guilty of the greatest crime, I think, 
a man is capable of, being to anfwer for all 
thofe mifchiefs of blood, rapine, and def- 
lation, which the breaking to pieces of go- 
vernments bring on a country. And he who 
does it, is juftly to be efteemed the common 
enemy and pelt of mankind, and is to be 
treated accordingly. 

§. 231. Thzt Jubjefts ox foreigners, attempt- 
ing by force on the properties of any people, 
may be rejijied with force, is agreed on all 
hands. But that magijlrates, doing the fame 
thing, may be rejijied, hath of late been 
denied : as if thole who had the greatefl: pri- 
vileges and advantages by the law, had thereby 
a power to break thofe laws, by which alone 
they were fet in a better place than their 
brethren : whereas their offence is thereby 
the greater, both as being ungrateful for 
the greater (hare they have by the law, and 
breaking alfo that truit, which is put into 
their hands by their brethren. 

§. 232. Whofoever ufes force without right, 
as every one does In fociety, who does it 
without law, puts himfelf into a Jiate of war 
with thofe againft whom he fo ufes it ; and 
in that flate all former ties are cancelled, all 


Of Civil-Government. 403 
other rights ceafe, and every one has a right 
to defend himfelf, and to refill the aggrejj'or* 
This is To evident, that Barclay himfelf, that 
great afTertor of the power and facrcdnefs of 
kings, is forced to confefs, That it is lawful 
for the people, in fome cafes, to refijl their 
king ; and that too in a chapter, wherein he 
pretends to mew, that the divine law muts 
up the people from all manner of rebellion. 
Whereby it is evident, even by his own 
doctrine, that, fince they may in fome cafes 
rejijl, all refitting of princes is not rebellion. 
His words are thefe. Quod Jiquis dicat, Ergone 
populus tyrannica crudelitati & furori jugulum 
Jemper prcebebit? Ergone multitudo civitates fuas 
fame * f err 0, &jiammd vajiari,feque, conjuges, £? 
liberos fortunce ludibrio & tyranni libidini ex- 
pom, inque omnia vita pericula omnefque ?niferias 
& molejiias a rege deduci patientur f Num Wis, 
quod otmii animantium generi eji a naturd tribu- 
turn, denegari debet, ut fc. vim vi repel/ant, 
ffeq; ab injuria tueantur ? Huic breviter re- 
Jponjwn fit, Populo univerfo negari defenfwne?n, 
qua juris naturalis eji, neque ultionem quce prater 
Jiaturam eji adverfus regem concedi debere. £>ua- 
propter Ji rex non in Jingulares tantu?n perfonas 
aliquot privatum odium exerceat, fed corpus 
etiam reipublica, cujus ipfe caput eji, i. e. totum 
popidum, vel infgnem aliquam ejus partem im- 
?nani & intolerandd javitid feu tyrannide di- 
vexet ; populo, quidem hoc cafu rejijiendi ac 
tuendi Je ab injuria pot eft as competit, fed tuendi- 
D d 2 fi 

AC4 Of Civil-Government. 

je tanfum, non enim in principem invadendi : & 
reftituendce injurice illatce, non recedendi a debitd 
reverent id propter accept am injur iam. Pr&- 
Jentem denique impetum propulfandi non vim 
prceteritam ulcifcenti jus habet. Horum enim 
alter um a naturd eft, ut vitam fcilicet corpufque 
tucamur. Alterum vero contra naturam, tit 
inferior de fuperiori fupplicium fumat. f^uod 
ttaque popidus malum, antequam faBwn ft, 
imp e dire pot eft, ?ie fiat, id pqftquam fatlum eft, 
in regem author on fceleris vindicare non potejl : 
popidus igitur hoc amplius quam privatus quif- 
piarn habet : quod huic, vel ipfts adverfariis 
judicibus, except o Buchanano, nullum nift in pa- 
tientia remedium fupereft. Cum ille Ji into- 
lerabilis tyr annus eft f modicum enim ferre om- 
nino debet) refftere cum reverentid pojfit, Bar- 
clay contra Monarchom. 1. iii. c. 8. 

In Englifi thus. 

■ §.233- But if a?:y one fhould afk, Muft the 
people then always lay themfelves open to the 
cruelty and rage of tyranny ? Muft they fee 
their cities pillaged, and laid in afies, their 
wives and children expofed to the tyrant's luft 
and fury, and themfelves and families reduced 
by their king to ruin, and all the miferies of 
id ant and oppreffion, and yet ft fill ? Mujl 
men alone be debarred the co?nmon privilege of 
oppofng force with force, which nature allows 
Jo freely to all other creatures for their pre- 


Op Civil-Government. 405 

fervation from injury ? I anjwer : Self-defence 
is a part of the law of nature ; nor can it be 
denied the community, even againji the king 
himfelf: but to revenge themfehes upon kirn, 
muft by no means be allozOed them ; it being not 
agreeable to that law. Wherefore if the king 
ftjali Jhew an hatred, not only to feme particular 
perfons, but fets himfelf againji the body of the 
common- wealth, whereof he is the head, and 
ft: all, with intolerable ill ufage, cruelly tyrannize 
over the whole, or a conjiderable part of the 
people, in this cafe the people have a right to 
rejift and defend themfehes from injury : but 
it muft be with this caution, that they only de- 
fend themfehes, but do not attack their prince : 
they may repair the damages received, but muft 
not for any provocation exceed the bounds of 
due reverence and refpedi. They may repulfe 
the prefent attempt, but muft not revenge paji 
violences : for it is natural for us to defend life 
and limb, but that an inferior Jhould punijh a 
fuperior, is againji nature. The rnij chief which 
is dejigned them, the people may prevent before 
it be done ; but when it is done, they muft not 
revenge it o?i the king, though author of the 
villany. This therefore is the privilege of the 
people in general, above what any private per- 
fen hath ; that particular men are allowed by 
our adverfarics themfehes (Buchanan only ex- 
cepted J to have no other remedy but patience ; 
but the body of the people may with refpeft rejift 
D d 3 intolerable 

406 Of Civil-Government. 

hi tolerable tyranny ; for when it is but mo- 
derate* they ought to endure it. 

§, 234. Thus far that great advocate of 
monarchical power allows of refijlance. 

§. 235. It is true, he has annexed two 
limitations to it, to no purpofe : 

Firji, He fays, it muft be with reverence. 

Secondly, It muft be without retribution, or 
punifhment ; and the reafon he gives is, be- 
caufe an inferior cannot punijh a fuperior. 

Firft, How to refijl force 'without jit -iking 
again, or how to jlrike with reverence, will 
need fome ikill to make intelligible. He 
that {hall oppofe an afTault only with a fhield 
to receive the blows, or in any more refpect- 
ful pofture, without a fword in his hand, to 
abate the confidence and force of the af- 
failant, will quickly be at an end of his re- 
fijlance, and will find fuch a defence ferve 
only to draw on himfelf the worfe ufage. 
This is as ridiculous a way of reffiing, as 
fuvenal thought it of fighting ; ubi tu pulfas, 
ego vapulo tantum. And the fuccefs of the 
combat will be unavoidably the fame he there 
defcribes it : 

■ ' ' Libert as pauperis hac efi : 
Pulfatus rogat, & pugnis concifus, adoraf, 
Ut liceat paucis cum dentibus inde reverti. 


Of Civil-Government. 407 

This will always be the event of fuch an 
imaginary refifiance, where men may not 
ftrike again. He therefore who may refijl y 
mufi be allowed to jlrike. . And then let our 
author, or any body elfe, join a knock on the 
head, or a cut on the face, with as much 
reverence and refpecl; as he thinks fit. He that 
can reconcile blows and reverence, may, for 
aught I know, defire for his pains, a civil, 
refpedrful cudgeling where-ever he can meet 
with it. 

Secondly, As to his fecond, An inferior 
cannot punijh a fuperior ; that is true, gene- 
rally fpeaking, whilfr, he is his fuperior. But 
to refill force with force, being the fiat e of 
war that levels the parties, cancels all former 
relation of reverence, refpecl:, and fuperiority : 
and then the odds that remains, is, that he, 
who oppofes the unjuft aggreffor, has this 
fuperiority over him, that he has a right, when 
he prevails, to punifh the offender, both for 
the breach of the peace, and all the evils that 
followed upon it. Barclay therefore, in an- 
other place, more coherently to himfelf, de- 
nies it to be lawful to refijl a king in any 
cafe. But he there affigns two cafes, where- 
by a king may un-king himfelf. His words 

<%uid ergo, nulline cafus incidere pojfunt qui- 
bus populo fefe erigere at que in regem impotentius 
dominant em arma caper e & invader e jure fuo 
fudque authoritate liceat ? Nulli certc quamdiu 

D d 4 rex 

408 Of Civil-Government. 

rex manet. Semper enim ex divinis id ob/Iat a 
Regem honorificato ; & qui poteftati refiftit, 
Dei ordinationi refiilit : non alias igitur i?i 
eum populo potejlas eft qua?n ji id commit tat 
propter quod ipfo jure rex ejfe de/iuat. Tunc 
enim fe ipfe principatu exuit at que in privatis 
conftituit liber : hoc modo populus & fuperior 
efficitur, rev erf o ad eum fc. jure illo quod ante 
regem inauguratum in interregno habuit. At 
font paucorum generum commijfa ej if modi qua 
hunc eff'eBum par hint. At ego cum plurima 
animo perluftrem, duo tanturn invenio, duos, in- 
quam, cafus quibus rex ipfo ftao ex rege non 
regem fe facit & omni honor e & dignitaie re- 
ga/i atque in fubditos poteftate "dejlituit ; quorum 
etiam meminit Winzerus. Horum unus eft, Si 
regnum difperdat, quemadmodum de NerGne fer- 
tur, quod is nempe fenatum populumque Roma- 
num, atque adeo arbem ipfam ferro ftammaque 
vaftare, ac novas fibi fedes quarere decrevifjet. 
Et de Caligula \ quod palam denunciarit fe neque 
civ em neque principem fenatui amplius fore, in- 
que animo babuerit interempto utriufque ordinis 
eledlifjimo quoque Alexandriam commigrare, ac 
ut populum uno iBu interimeret, unam ei cer- 
vicem optavit. Talia cum rex aliquis meditatur 
& molitur JerJa, omnem regnandi curam & 
animum ilicd abjicit, ac proinde imperium in 
fubditos ami t tit, ut dominus fervi pro dcrelifio 
habit i dominium. 

§. 236. Alter cafus eft, Si rex in alicujus 
client el am ft contulit, ac regnum quod lib e rum 

a majoribus. 

Of Civil-Government. 409 

a majoribus & populo traditum accepit, alienee 
ditioni mancipavit. Nam tunc quamvis forte 
non ed mente id agit populo plane ut incommodet : 
tamen quia quod pr&cipuym eft regime dignitatis 
ami/it, ut jummus fcilicet in regno fecundum 
Deum fit, & fo!o Deo inferior, atque populum 
etiam totum ignorantem vel invitum, cujus li- 
bertatem fartam & tec~lam confervare debuit, in 
alter ins gentis ditionem & pot eft at em dedidit; 
hdc velut quadam regni ab alienatione effecit, ut 
nee quod ipfe in regno imperium habuit retineat, 
nee in eum cui collatum voluit, juris qulcqua?n 
transferat ; atque ita eo faSlo liberum jam & 
fua poteftatis populum relinquit, cujus rei exem- 
plum unum annales Scotici fuppeditant, Barclay 
contra Monarchom. 1. iii. c. 16. 

Which in Englifh runs thus. 

§. 237. What then, can there no cafe happen 

wherein the people may of right, and by their 

own authority \ help themflves, take arms, and 

fet upon their king, imperioujly domineering over 

them ? None at all, wkilfi he remains a king. 

Honour the kin^, and he that refifts the 

power, refifls the ordinance of God ; are 

divine oracles that will never permit it. The people 

therefore can never come by a power over him, 

unlefs he does fomething that makes him ceafe - 

to be a king : for then he divefts himfelf of his 

crown and dignity, and returns to the ft ate of 

a private man, and the people become free and 


4io Of Civil-Government. 
fuperior, the power which they had in the in- 
terregnum, before they crowned him king, de- 
volving to them again. But there are but few 
mi/carriages which bring the matter to this 
ft ate. After confidering it well on all fides, I 
can find but two. Two cafes there are, I fay, 
whereby ■ a king, ipib facto, becomes no king, 
and lofes all power and regal authority over his 
people ; which are alfo taken notice of by Win- 

The firfi is, If he endeavour to overturn the 
government, that is, if he have a purpofe and 
defign to ruin the kingdom and common- wealth, 
as it is recorded of Nero, that hi refolved to 
cut off the fenate and people of Rome, lay the 
city wafie with fire and fword, and then re- 
move to fome other place. And of Caligula, 
that he openly declared, that he would be no 
longer a head to the people or fenate, and that 
he had it in his thoughts to cut off the wortbiejl 
men of both ranks, and then retire to A lex an- 
\ dria : and he wijht that the people had but one 
neck, that he tnight difpatch them all at a blow. 

- Such defigns as thefe, when any king harbours 

i A in his thoughts, and ferioufly promotes, he im~ 

7?iediately gives up all care and thought of the 

Kcommon- wealth ; and cofifequently jorfeits the 
power of governing his fubjecls, as a majler 
does the dominion over his flaves whom be hath 

§. 238. The other cafe is, When a king makes 
bh>ijelf the dependent of another, and fubjecls his 


Of Civil-Government. 411 

kingdom which his anceftors left him, and the 
people put free into his hands, to the dominion 
of another : for however perhaps it may not be 
his intention to prejudice the people ; yet becaufe 
he has hereby loft the principal part of regal 
dignity ; viz. to be next and immediately under 
God, fupreme in his kingdom ; and alfo becaufe 
he betrayed or forced his people, whofe liberty 
he ought to have carefully preferved, into the 
power and dominion of a foreign nation. By 
this, as it were, alienation of his kingdom, he 
himfelf lofes the power he had in it before, 
without transferring any the leaf right to thofe 
on whom he would have bejlcwed it ; and Jo by 
this ac~l fets the people free, and leaves them at 
their own difpofal. One example of this is to 
be found in the Scotch Annals. 

§. 239. In thefe cafes Barclay, the great 
champion of abfolute monarchy, is forced 
to allow, that a king may be rejijled, and Xl a 
ceafes to be a king. That is, in fhort, not 
to multiply cafes, in whatfoever .he has no 
authority, there he is no king, and may be-— 
refifled : for wherefoever the authority ceafes, / \s 4 
the king ceafes too, and becomes like other fc£ 
men who have no authority. And thefe two 
cafes he inftances in, differ little from thofc 
above mentioned, to be deftructive to go- 
vernments, only that he has omitted the 
principle from which his doctrine flows; and 
that is, the breach of truft, in not preferving 
the form of government agreed on, and in 
I not 

412 Op Civil-Government. 

not intending the end of government itfelf, 
which is the public good and prefervation of 
property. When a king has dethroned him- 
felf, and put himfelf in a ftate of war with 
his people, what mall hinder them from 
profecuting him who is no king, as they 
would any other man, who has put himfelf 
into a ftate of war with them ; Barclay, and 
thofe of his opinion, would do well to tell 
us. This farther I defire may be taken no- 
tice of out of Barclay, that he fays, The mif- 
chief that is dejigned them, the people may pre- 
vent before it be done : whereby he allows re- 
fijlance when tyranny is but in defign. Such 
dejigns as thefe (fays he) when any king har- 
bours in his thoughts and ferioufly promotes , he 
immediately gives up all care and thought of the 
common- we alt h' y fo that, according to him, the 
neglecl: of the public good is to be taken as 
an evidence of fuch defign, or at leaft for a 
fufficient caufe of refflance. And the reafon 
of all, he gives in thefe words, Becaufe he 
betrayed or forced his people, whofe liberty he 
ought carefully to have preferved. W hat he adds, 
into the power and dominion of a foreign nation, 
iignifies nothing, the fault and forfeiture ly-r 
ing in the lofs of their liberty, which he 
ought to have preferved, and not in any di- 
ftinclion of the perfons to whofe dominion 
they were fubjecled. The peoples right is, 
equally invaded, and their liberty loft, whe- 
ther they are made Haves to any of their 


Of Civil-Government. 413 

own, or a foreign nation ; and in this lies the 
injury, and againft this only have they the 
ri^ht of defence. And there are inftances 
to be found in all countries, which mew, that 
it is not the change of nations in the perfons 
of their governors, but the change of go- 
vernment, that gives the offence. Biljon, a 
bifhop of our church, and a great flickler for 
the power and prerogative of princes, does, 
if I miftake not, in his treatife of Chrijiian 
fubje&ion, acknowledge, that princes may for- 
feit their power, and their title to the obe- 
dience of their fubjects -, and if there needed 
authority in a cafe where reafon is fo plain, 
I could fend my reader to BraSion, Forte/cue, 
and the author of the Mirrour, and others, 
writers that cannot be fufpecled to be igno- 
rant of our government, or enemies to it. 
But I thought Hooker alone might be enough 
to fatisfy thofe men, who relying on him 
for their ecclefiartical polity, are by a ftrange 
fate carried to deny thofe principles upon 
which he builds it. Whether they arejherein 
made the tools of cunninger workmen, to 
pull down their own fabric, they were bed 
look. This I am fure, their civil policy is 
fo new, fo dangerous, and fo deftructive to 
both rulers and people, that as former ages 
never could bear the broaching of it ; fo it 
may be hoped, thofe to come, redeemed from 
the impofitions of thefe Egyptian under-tafk- 
mailers, will abhor the memory of fuel) fer- 


414 Of Civil-Government. 

vile flatterers, who, whilft it feemed to ferve 
their turn, refolved all government into ab- 
folute tyranny, and would have all men born 
to, what their mean fouls fitted them for, 

§. 240. Here, it is like, the common que- 
/Hon will be made, Who fiall be judge, whe- 
ther the prince or legiflative act contrary to 
their trull? This, perhaps, ill-affected and 
factious men may fpread amongft. the people, 
when the prince only makes ufe of his due 
prerogative. To this I reply, The people 
Jhall be judge ; for who fhall be judge whe- 
ther his truftee or deputy acts well, and ac- 
cording to the trull: repofed in him, but he 
who deputes him, and muft, by having de- 
puted him, have flill a power to difcard him, 
when he fails in his truft ? If this be rea- 
fonable in particular cafes of private men, 
why mould it be otherwife in that of the 
greater!: moment, where the welfare of mil- 
lions is concerned, and alfo where the evil, 
if not prevented, is greater, and the redrefs 
very difficult, dear, and dangerous ? 

§. 141. But farther, this queftion, (Who 
Jhall be judge?) cannot mean, that there is 
no judge at all: for where there is no ju- 
dicature on earth, to decide controversies 
amongft men, God in heaven is judge* He 
alone, it is true, is judge of the right. But 
every man is judge for himfelf, as in all other 
cafes, fo in this, whether another hath put 



himfelf into a ftatc of war with him, and 
whether he mould appeal to the Supreme 
Judge, as yeptha did. 

§. 242. If a controverfy arife betwixt a 
prince and fome of the people, in a matter 
where the law is filent, or doubtful, and the 
thing be of great confequence, I mould think 
the proper umpire, in fuch a cafe, mould be 
the body of the people : for in cafes where 
the prince hath a truft repofed in him, and 
is difpenfed from the common ordinary rules 
of the law ; there, if any men find them- 
felves aggrieved, and think the prince ads 
contrary to, or beyond that truft, who fo 
proper to judge as the body of the people, 
(who, at firft, lodged that trull in him) how 
far they meant it mould extend ? But if the 
prince, or whoever they be in the admini- 
ftration, decline that way of determination, 
the appeal then lies no where but to heaven ; 
force between either perfons, who have no 
known fuperior on earth, or which permits 
no appeal to a judge on earth, being pro- 
perly a ftate of war, wherein the appeal lies 
only to heaven ; and in that ftate the injured 
party muji judge for himfelf, when he will 
think fit to make ufe of that appeal, and put 
himfelf upon it. 

§. 243. To conclude, The power that every 
individual gave the fociety, when he entered 
into it, can never revert to the individuals 
again, as long as the fociety lafts, but will 


4i 6 Of Civil-Government. 

always remain in the community; becaufe 
without this there can be no community, no 
common-wealth, which is contrary to the 
original agreement : fo alfo when the fociety 
hath placed the legiflative in any affembly 
of men, to continue in them and their fuc- 
celTors, with direction and authority for pro- 
viding fuch fucceffors, the legiflative can never 
revert to the people whilft that government 
lafts -, becaufe having provided a legiflative 
with power to continue for ever, they have 
given up their political power to the legif- 
lative, and cannot refume it. But if they 
have fet limits to the duration of their legif- 
lative, and made this fupreme power in any 
perfon, or affembly, only temporary ; or elfe, 
when by the mifcarriages of thofe in autho- 
rity, it is forfeited ; upon the forfeiture, or 
at the determination of the time fet, it re- 
verts to the fociety, and the people have a 
right to a<5l as fupreme, and continue the 
legiflative in themfelves; or erect a new form, 
or under the old form place it in new hands, 
as they think good. 

F I N I S. 

r^ A 

' itih 

> 1